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Tallinder Out For Playoffs

Thursday, 05.25.2006 / 12:00 AM / News
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Tallinder Out For Playoffs

May 25, 2006
By Brian Wheeler

Why should the playoffs be any different than the regular season? After persevering through 237 man games lost due to injury in their first 82 games, the Buffalo Sabres will need to show that same resiliency following the loss of defenseman Henrik Tallinder for the duration of the postseason.

Tallinder became the third Sabres blueliner to be bitten by the injury bug after he suffered a broken bone in his left arm with six minutes remaining in Game Three of the team's best-of-seven series against the Carolina Hurricanes on Wednesday night.

"It's been a tough year when it comes to injuries," said Lindy Ruff during his morning press conference. "We've been able to overcome it, have had other players step up, and we're going to have to continue to have other players step up."

According to Ruff, the injury occurred on an innocent looking hit along the boards that turned into, "one of those freak accidents." In truth, the hit was so unnoticeable that media members on Wednesday night were scrambling to find out the cause of Tallinder's absence.

The broken arm ends the Stockholm, Sweden native's best professional season to date. In 82 regular season games, the defenseman set career-highs with 15 assists, 21 points and a plus/minus rating of plus-10 despite playing night in and night out against the opposition's top line.

During the playoffs, Tallinder recorded a pair of goals and eight points in 14 games and had been charged with eating the majority of ice time following injuries to Teppo Numminen - lower body - and Dmitri Kalinin - broken ankle.

"You feel terrible for Henrik," said Ruff. "He's played tremendously and he doesn't get to be part of the ride anymore. There is nothing to get down about besides that. We are more than capable of overcoming his loss. We've been able to do it all year."

The Sabres are now forced to examine four possible scenarios for Tallinder's replacement.

First and foremost, Buffalo hopes that Numminen will be healthy enough to join the team in Game Four. The veteran coupled with Jeff Jillson - who played splendidly during Game Three - would most likely serve as the Sabres third defensive pairing if he was a go.

If Numminen misses his second-consecutive game on Friday night, then three rookies with a total of one NHL playoff game of experience on the blueline remain: Doug Janik, Nathan Paetsch and Jason Pominville.

"These players that are going in now have been around here for six weeks," said Ruff concerning the prospects that joined the team after the Rochester Americans' season concluded.

"They've watched all the video, gone through the same game films that we go through and they are ready to play. It's not like we're pulling somebody rusty off the shelf."

Although Pominville has appeared in all 14 of Buffalo's playoff games this season, he has never played a defensive role in a game except for the point on the power play. A responsible forward in his own zone, Pominville has practiced with the defense but doesn't know the position as well as the other two.

Janik - a five-year starter for Rochester - saw just over four minutes of action in his only postseason game last Monday, while Paetsch has played only one game in the NHL during his career.

"We'll make that decision probably tomorrow," Ruff said.

SCHEDULE

HOME
AWAY
PROMOTIONAL

STANDINGS

EASTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 p - BOS 82 54 19 9 261 177 117
2 y - PIT 82 51 24 7 249 207 109
3 x - TBL 82 46 27 9 240 215 101
4 x - MTL 82 46 28 8 215 204 100
5 x - NYR 82 45 31 6 218 193 96
6 x - PHI 82 42 30 10 236 235 94
7 x - CBJ 82 43 32 7 231 216 93
8 x - DET 82 39 28 15 222 230 93
9 WSH 82 38 30 14 235 240 90
10 NJD 82 35 29 18 197 208 88
11 OTT 82 37 31 14 236 265 88
12 TOR 82 38 36 8 231 256 84
13 CAR 82 36 35 11 207 230 83
14 NYI 82 34 37 11 225 267 79
15 FLA 82 29 45 8 196 268 66
16 BUF 82 21 51 10 157 248 52

STATS

2013-2014 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
C. Hodgson 72 20 24 -26 44
T. Ennis 80 21 22 -25 43
D. Stafford 70 16 18 -19 34
C. Ehrhoff 79 6 27 -27 33
C. Stewart 63 15 11 0 26
C. Conacher 79 7 19 1 26
T. Myers 62 9 13 -26 22
Z. Girgensons 70 8 14 -6 22
M. Foligno 74 7 12 -17 19
J. McBain 69 6 11 -13 17
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
M. Neuvirth 4 8 2 .921 2.78
J. Enroth 4 17 5 .911 2.82