Mikhail Grigorenko is back on his way to the bigs.
The Russian forward, Buffalo’s first-round pick (12th overall) at the 2012 NHL Entry Draft, has been recalled to the Sabres from AHL Rochester, the club announced on Tuesday.
Also headed up from the Amerks are forwards Tim Schaller and Jerry D’Amigo.
The trio has been brought up to replace Brian Flynn, Torrey Mitchell and Chris Stewart, all three of whom were traded at Monday’s deadline. Between those departures and the injuries to Josh Gorges, Zemgus Girgensons and Patrick Kaleta (Evander Kane too, lest we forget), Buffalo will be icing a forward group that projects to look like this:
Matt Moulson-Tyler Ennis-Brian Gionta
Marcus Foligno-Mikhail Grigorenko-Cody Hodgson
Johan Larsson-Phil Varone-Zac Dalpe
Nicolas Deslauriers-Schaller-Matt Ellis
D’Amigo would be the 13th forward, presumably.
As for Grigorenko, most eyes will likely be on him as he gets another stint with the parent club. He’s been good in Rochester this year, scoring 31 points in 38 games, but only had one goal and one assist in 12 games with the Sabres earlier this year. His last NHL game came on Jan. 9.
Andrei Loktionov had shoulder surgery after suffering an injury at the IIHF World Championships and then found out toward the end of June that he’ll be an unrestricted free agent.
The Carolina Hurricanes didn’t give the 24-year-old center a qualifying offer, which is a development the club announced Monday, and that means Loktionov will hit the open market.
There were other notable restricted free agents that also didn’t get qualifying offers.
Cory Conacher and Jamie McBain of the Buffalo Sabres; Ryan White of the Montreal Canadiens; Keaton Ellerby, James Wright and Matt Halischuk of the Winnipeg Jets; Michael Del Zotto of the Nashville Predators; Jordan Schroeder and Zac Dalpe of the Vancouver Canucks; Mathieu Perreault of the Anaheim Ducks, although it’s a little more complicated then that; T.J. Galiardi and Paul Byron of the Calgary Flames;
One can excuse much of the hockey world for being a little bleary eyed during the time of the Tampa Bay Lightning – Vancouver Canucks game.
After all, it’s the only game of the night, with a late start. Some may be barely over the “results” of New Year’s Eve festivities. There’s also that 2014 Winter Classic that may leave some would-be onlookers groggy.
The game started in a yawn-inducing way, too, but hopefully fans didn’t doze off during a run of second period goals Wednesday night.
Bruce Richardson scored for Vancouver 11:25 into the middle frame, but things didn’t really pick up until four minutes later. Over a span of just more than 30 seconds, a 1-0 game turned into a 2-2 tie. Here are the goals in chronological order.
Valtteri Filppula made it 1-1 with a snapshot 15:27 into the period:
Twenty seconds later, Tyler Johnson gave Tampa Bay a fleeting 2-1 lead:
That lead only made persisted for 14 seconds, however, as Zac Dalpe scored his first goal of the season:
One can only imagine the lightning puns that were striking down on readers after that display.
Update: The Lightning ended up winning 4-2 on Wednesday. The Bolts ended a two-game skid, extending Vancouver’s losing streak to two in the process.