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HECHT BACK IN THE LINEUP

Wednesday, 11.05.2008 / 2:35 PM / All News
By Erin Pollina  - Sabres.com
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HECHT BACK IN THE LINEUP
Jochen Hecht (Photo: Getty Images)
Jochen Hecht is set to return to the Sabres’ lineup Friday night as the team takes on the Atlanta Thrashers.

The forward just isn’t sure where.

Before undergoing surgery to repair a broken finger on Oct. 14, Hecht spent time both on the wing and up the middle.

With Clarke MacArthur filling in as a formidable replacement, in both positions, Hecht could not say which role he would be in upon his return.

“We have a lot of good centers and a lot of good wingers,” Hecht said. “It’s tough to find a spot.”
 
“We have a lot of options now,” Head Coach Lindy Ruff said. “I think with the hand the way it is, he may get some help at center and he may play a little bit of both. But I’m not concerned where he is.”

Ruff’s decision may be based on the status of Tim Connolly.

The centerman was absent from Wednesday’s practice with a sore groin.

"I think after playing a couple games and missing training camp, it would be expected that it would be a little sore after being in the heat of the battle," Ruff said.

Connolly missed the first 10 games of the regular season, and most of training camp with a hairline fracture in his vertebrae. He made his season debut on Nov. 1.

“I can understand how you can get sore,” Ruff said. “He’s played hard for two games. The part that hurts him is that he’s missed a good part of the schedule and all of training camp. That will always creep into your game and we will try to get him through this.”

Ruff said he did not think it would affect Friday’s lineup, “but obviously you never know.

“We’ve got a situation here where we’ll give him an extra day and see how it goes.”

Connolly centered MacArthur and Jason Pominville in the Sabres’ previous two contests. Hecht practiced with the pair Wednesday morning.

If Connolly does stay in the lineup, it presents a difficult decision for Ruff as the Sabres would have 24 players on the active roster (15 forwards, seven defenseman, two goaltenders). NHL rosters can have a maximum of 23 active players.

"It's not over yet," Ruff said. "We've got until Friday."

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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