Game Preview | 5 things to know ahead of Sabres vs. Canadiens

Isak Rosen smiled when Seth Appert spoke about the improvement the striker has already displayed since development camp in July.

“You can tell he knows that,” Appert said. “He’s done a ton of work just in the two months since we’ve seen him.”

Rosen, the 14th overall pick in 2021, will be one of four first-round picks on the ice when the Sabers open their three-game Prospects Challenge schedule against the Montreal Canadiens on Thursday. The others are Sabers forward Matt Savoy – whose first “electric” workout was the subject of Wednesday’s notebook – and Canadians forwards Juraj Slafkovsky and Filip Mesar.

Tickets for the game at LECOM Harborcenter are available for $10.

The game will be streamed live on Sabers.com as well as the team’s Twitter and Facebook pages.

Here are five things to know.

1. Programming notes

Jiri Kulich will not participate in the tournament due to a lower body injury, Appert announced. The forward – who was drafted the 28th overall pick this summer – will be re-evaluated during training camp.

friend forward Philippe Cederqvistwho missed practice on Wednesday because of bad weather, will play.

Video: Meet prospects with Matej Pekar

2. Guardians

The two goaltenders from Buffalo’s Prospects Challenge roster will split the opener, Appert announced. Beck Warm, who signed a one-year AHL contract with Rochester this summer, will start. Unregistered guest Tomas Suchanek will take over.

3. Rosen’s Big Leap

Appert listed the ways Rosen has improved in the two months since attending development camp, which included a productive stint at the World Junior Championship in August.

“He looks faster,” Appert said. “He looks tougher on the puck. And his first step seems to have more pop or more confidence. So part of it is physical. But I think part of the reason you train so hard is also what it does to you mentally. You know you’ve worked and you know you’re ready. »

Rosen, 19, is preparing for his first season in North America after signing an entry-level contract this summer. Appert underlined JJ Peterkawho also played a year professionally in his home country before making the jump to the AHL, as an example of how Rosen can transition successfully.

Peterka scored four goals before Christmas last season. He finished with 28 goals and 68 points, earning a spot on the AHL All-Rookie Team before leading the Amerks with 12 points in the playoffs.

“These will all be adjustments that [Rosen] and Kulich ultimately and (2021 second-round pick Aleksandr) Kisakov are going to have to face it,” Appert said. raise their game.”

Video: Adams speaks to prospects

4. On the power play

The Sabers started their morning workout with power drills. The units were as follows:

Philippe Cederqvist
Alexander KisakovTyson KozakMatt Savoy
Oskari Laaksonen

Josh Bloom
Linus WeissbachLukas RousekIsak Rosen
Mats Lindgren

5. Scout the Habs

The Montreal squad is led by Slafkovsky, the first overall pick this summer. He becomes the fourth No. 1 pick to enter the Prospects Challenge, joining Rasmus Dahlin (Buffalo), Nico Hischier (New Jersey) and Jack Hughes (New Jersey).

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