The Buffalo Sabres have announced that second-year center Casey Mittelstadt has been sent to the organization’s AHL affiliate, the Rochester Americans. The move comes in the middle of a five-game streak in which the Sabres have earned at least a point in the standings, however, Mittelstadt has had only one assist through those five matchups.
In that time, Mittelstadt saw his minutes fluctuate between 9:51 and 16:30. On the season, however, the young forward has seen his ice time drop to an average of 12:46. Mittelstadt impressed in his six game ‘tryout’ at the end of the 2017-18 season, however, he has struggled to find an identity with a team that is perhaps closer to success than any in the past decade.
Mittelstadt has four goals and five assists in his 31 games this season. Just four days ago, Die by the Blade eluded to the necessity of the move, writing, “If the Sabres are going to continue to handle him as they have - scratching him, playing limited minutes and sometimes sitting him on the bench for nearly an entire period - he’d be much better off spending some time in the AHL.”
The Americans are riding high on a three game win streak, and have lost only one game in regulation since November 1. The Amerks play tonight, but it is unknown at the time of writing whether Mittelstadt will be in the lineup.
Mittelstadt was taken 8th overall in the 2017 NHL Entry Draft. He will a restricted free agent this summer.