Thursday for Sabres: Vanek questionable, Stafford set to return

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The Buffalo Sabres presented some lineup updates on Wednesday as they prepare for Thursday’s game against the Florida Panthers.

The first is that injury-cursed star Thomas Vanek is questionable for that game. He’s listed as day-to-day with an upper-body issue. If that’s too vague, head coach Ron Rolston provided a little more detail, calling it “just a muscle strain.”

Moving on, the Sabres plan on dressing Drew Stafford after he sat out two games as a healthy scratch.

No doubt about it, the 2013 season’s been a rough one for the 27-year-old winger, although one can argue that bad luck has at least something to do with it. He’s connected on just 5.3 percent of the shots he’s fired, less than half of his career rate of 11.6 percent.

He’d still probably have mediocre numbers, but they’d at least look a little better if things were going normally.

The Sabres might have motivation that goes beyond winning by having Stafford suit up, at he could theoretically fetch something in a trade (even if he isn’t demanding one).