Sabres GM Regier making trade calls; Ehrhoff to return tonight

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It’s been busy in Buffalo lately on both the injury and speculation front.

To the latter — speculation! — Sabres GM Darcy Regier told ESPN.com he’s making calls around the league, looking to make a deal in the hope of snapping Buffalo out of its 3-6-1 start to the season.

More: Sabres GM Regier: “Lindy is the guy”

“”I’ve talked to some GMs the last few days,” Regier said. “It’s a pretty quiet market right now. A number of teams have very small things they want to do, quite honestly, with the hope that whether it’s with their players or our players, they’re going to get them on track because of their previous history of them being a lot better.”

It’s obvious Buffalo needs to improve its defensive play — they’re allowing nearly four goals per game — and that improvement could come from within as injured blueliners return to action.

It also might have to come from within.

ESPN’s Pierre LeBrun reports it “appears to be a soft trade market” at the moment, with defensemen at a premium.

Wade Redden found work quickly after being bought out by the Rangers, and Detroit signed 33-year-old Kent Huskins — unattached to start the year — after a rash of injuries depleted its defense.

Speaking of defensemen, Christian Ehrhoff returns from injury tonight to face the Habs after missing Tuesday’s game in Ottawa with a undisclosed muscle strain.

It’s unclear who he’ll play with on defense because, as alluded to earlier, Buffalo’s a mess injury-wise.

Andrej Sekera and Robyn Regehr are both out with ankle injuries (though head coach Lindy Ruff said both could return by the weekend), and the Buffalo News projects it’ll be Ehrhoff, Mike Weber, Jordan Leopold, Alex Sulzer, Adam Pardy and Tyler Myers on defense, with T.J. Brennan the odd man out.

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Lindy Ruff states the obvious: “We need to win games”

Erik Karlsson played through hairline fractures in foot to help Sens advance

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Remember when many were keeping an eye on Erik Karlsson after he was seemingly cramping up after logging more than 40 minutes in an OT contest against the Boston Bruins.

It’s possible he was also dealing with that sort of ailment, but he earned some “hockey tough” kudos on Sunday after word surfaced that the Ottawa Senators defenseman was dealing with hairline fractures in his left heel through the series.

Sportsnet’s Jason York refers to the issue as “two small fractures” while ESPN’s Joe McDonald went into specifics, noting that Karlsson explains that the injury happened on March 28 (and was why he missed some games late in the season).

There’s some optimism as the Senators ready for the New York Rangers, at least according to Karlsson.

Hmm.

Either way, that’s impressive stuff from the Senators defenseman, and the sort of information that usually only surfaces after a team has been eliminated. We’ll see if he’s hindered by such issues as the playoffs go along.

Gaudreau, Granlund and Tarasenko: 2017 Lady Byng finalists

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The NHL officially announced the nominees for the 2017 Lady Byng on Sunday, and they’re a star-studded bunch: Johnny Gaudreau, Mikael Granlund and Vladimir Tarasenko.

The PHWA determines “the player adjudged to have exhibited the best type of sportsmanship and gentlemanly conduct combined with a high standard of playing ability.”

(Did Tarasenko help eliminate Granlund’s team in a gentlemanly fashion?)

For more on the three finalists, click here.

MacArthur, Senators end Bruins’ season in OT after controversial calls

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It’s a feel-good story, especially if you can look beyond questions of officiating.

Clarke MacArthur could have very well never played another NHL game considering his lengthy battles with concussion symptoms. Instead, he drew a penalty on the Boston Bruins in overtime of Game 6 and then managed to score the series-clinching goal.

Now, this isn’t to say that MacArthur didn’t rightfully draw a penalty; it most clearly was. And, in the bigger picture, it’s one of those stories that almost makes you wonder if real-life sports actually do follow Hollywood scripts.

People just wonder about some other decisions during that overtime, in particular, making it frustrating for some Bruins fans to see the season end in such a way.

Whether they like it or not, that is the case, though.

The Senators took Game 6 by a score of 3-2 (OT), winning their series 4-2. They can breathe a sigh of relief in avoiding a Game 7, an especially valuable bonus since Erik Karlsson had been pushed hard lately, logging more than 40 minutes in a recent game.

Ottawa avoids a do-or-die contest. Instead, they’ll face the New York Rangers in the next round while the Bruins enter the summer following an up-and-down campaign.

Bergeron takes advantage of slow Sens change, sends Game 6 to OT (Video)

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Every game in this Senators – Bruins series has been decided by one goal, so why not send Game 6 to overtime?

Oh, and speaking of overtime, this contest going beyond regulation makes it 17 OT games, tying an NHL record for the most in a single round.

Ottawa appeared to take a “lazy change” with a 2-1 lead, and Patrice Bergeron made the Senators pay, putting in a rebound to collect the goal that eventually sent this contest to overtime.