For a change, we have some welcome news from Sabres practice - no new injuries to report! In fact, we have some players coming back from injury who were on ice - Brad Boyes and Patrick Kaleta skated on lines during workouts, and Tyler Myers skated and did some stickhandling work too, but didn't participate in team drills.
Speaking of Myers, the young defenseman is the subject of today's question on '12 Questions For Christmas'.
#4 - What would be realistic expectations for Tyler Myers for the rest of this season?
Prior to the broken wrist that knocked him out just over a month ago, Myers was having a quite underwhelming season. The 21-year old defenseman had 2G, 4A and was -4 in 19 games played. At the time of his injury, he led the team in blocked shots, but had not been displaying much of the physical presence that he had shown during the playoff series last season against the Philadelphia Flyers. He was on par for 120 shots, about the same as last season, but his shooting percentage was down to 7.1% (from 10.6% & 8.2% in previous years). Including his missed time, this only puts him on pace for 5G and 10A for the season.
After winning the Calder Trophy for NHL Rookie of the Year two seasons ago, Myers started his sophomore season in poor form before rallying towards the end of the year. He signed a big extension at the beginning of this season, the last year of his entry-level contract with a big payday - seven years for $38.5 million.
Keeping the team's current struggles in mind, which Myers will we see return to action? The rookie year d-man? The one that began this season? Or the one that ended the 2010-11 season on a tear, leading the Sabres into the playoffs?