Buffalo, N.Y. (WGR 550) – The Buffalo Sabres will wait until after practice on Monday to announce their final 23-man roster for the 2021-22 regular season.
We got a little insight on Sunday when only Axel Jonsson-Fjallby was waived by the 2 p.m. ET deadline. That means Cody Eakin and John Hayden have not been waived and have made the team.
The Sabres are currently carrying eight defensemen with Mattias Samuelsson injured and likely going on Injured Reserve. Jack Eichel will also start the season on I.R.
With seven defensemen on the active roster, Eakin and Hayden are currently the extra forwards, which leaves no room for rookie JJ Peterka. That could change if general manager Kevyn Adams makes a trade before Monday afternoon’s deadline.
You have to feel bad for Jonsson-Fjallby, who after being claimed from the Washington Capitals on Monday, was supposed to play in the Sabres' final two preseason games, but visa problems prevented him from getting a look.
Jacob Bryson took advantage of his training camp opportunities to earn a spot. You have to figure he’s in the top-six, or he’d be in Rochester. That leaves either Mark Pysyk or Will Butcher as the seventh defenseman on the roster.
Peterka scored his third goal of the preseason on Saturday when he tipped in a Tage Thompson shot. That line, along with Rasmus Asplund, looked very good in the win over the Detroit Red Wings. Peterka could still make the team as a 19-year-old rookie if Adams makes a trade.
As it stands now, the forwards that appear to be making the team are Casey Mittelstadt, Dylan Cozens, Zemgus Girgensons, Thompson, Eakin, Anders Bjork, Jeff Skinner, Drake Caggiula, Asplund, Victor Olofsson, Vinnie Hinostroza, Arttu Ruotsalainen, Kyle Okposo and Hayden.
Forward Brandon Biro and defenseman Casey Fitzgerald were sent to the Rochester Americans on Sunday morning.
The Sabres were off Sunday and will practice on Monday. Game No. 1 of the season is Thursday at home against the Montreal Canadiens.