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OFFENSE GETS A BOOST

Friday, 12.2.2011 / 12:37 PM ET
By Kevin Snow - Sabres.com (@kwsnow) / THE MORNING SKATE
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THE MORNING SKATE

A pair of key pieces will return to the Buffalo lineup tonight when the Sabres host the Detroit Red Wings in a 7:30 p.m. start at First Niagara Center.

Ryan Miller passed his concussion testing yesterday, and will be back in uniform for the first time since November 12 in Boston. Tyler Ennis returns after missing 17 games with an ankle injury suffered in Tampa Bay on October 22. Lindy Ruff didn’t say if Miller would be starting tonight or tomorrow in Nashville.

LISTEN TO LINDY RUFF'S COMPLETE MORNING SKATE AUDIO

For Ennis it’s an opportunity to take a mulligan on a season that started slowly for him, as he was held without a point in the seven games he played in. Much more is expected of the offensively-talented 22-year-old who had 22 goals and 49 points last year in his rookie season.

“We need him to be creative when he can be. He knows the situations we want him to hang on, and he knows the situations where he’s gotta try to get pucks to the net,” explained Ruff. “He even admitted that he passed up some great opportunities. Part of Tyler being effective is his ability to hold on to the puck and open people up. We need him to hang to pucks.”

Ennis will play right wing on a line with Derek Roy and Drew Stafford.



Detroit comes into tonight’s game having won six in a row, and 10 of their last 12 games. They have outscored the opposition 24-11 during the current streak, and have allowed three goals or more just once in their past six games. The Red Wings are one of five teams with a league-leading 15 wins so far.


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