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BACK SPASMS KEEP SPACEK FROM PRACTICE

Friday, 01.11.2008 / 2:13 PM / News
By Brian Wheeler  - Sabres.com
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BACK SPASMS KEEP SPACEK FROM PRACTICE
Jaroslav Spacek (photo: Getty Images)
Injury news from the Amherst Pepsi Center wasn't exactly encouraging for the Buffalo Sabres.

Half of the Sabres top defensive pairing this season - Jaroslav Spacek - missed practice on Friday after leaving Thursday night's 3-2 shootout loss to Ottawa due to back spasms.

Head coach Lindy Ruff said Spacek was scheduled to meet with team doctors and would most likely miss a couple of days work.

"It doesn't look like he'll play tomorrow," said Ruff regarding Buffalo's Saturday night match-up with the New Jersey Devils.  "It flared up after the first period [Thursday].  I was aware of it.  He thought he'd give it a try.

"I think you saw the results in the second period.  He was probably half speed and couldn't shoot."

According to Ruff, Spacek's back was even "tighter and stiffer" in the morning.  Spacek finished Thursday night with a minus-one rating in less than 15 minutes of ice time.

How difficult will his absense make a meeting with the Atlantic-Division leading Devils?

"I've told the guys, 'No Excuses' and I believed that in Ottawa," said Ruff of his hobbled roster.  "I thought the work we did with the lineup we had in the last two games was a very good effort."

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The Sabres trio of injured forwards - Maxim Afinogenov (groin), Tim Connolly (groin), and Derek Roy (shoulder) - skated prior to practice and when the active roster entered the ice,  Afinogenov and Connolly each stayed to participate in organized drills.

Afinogenov wore a red jersey signifying "non-contact" while Connolly skated on a line with Adam Mair and Thomas Vanek.

Ruff said the Afinogenov "isn't ready to play" but Connolly "is in a situation where it's possible."

Roy will not be ready for Saturday.

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Tussling with Chris Neil and playing more than 19 minutes of physical hockey against the Eastern-Conference leading Senators warranted a day off for Paul Gaustad. 

The six-foot-four, 229-pound center is one of only six Sabres to appear in all 42 games.  Brian Campbell, Jochen Hecht, Toni Lydman, Jason Pominville and Thomas Vanek are the others.

Ruff seemed confident that number would remain at half a dozen come the weekend.

"He's just a little banged up and needed some rest," said Ruff.  "We're anticipating that he'll be able to go [Saturday]."

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