BUFFALO, N.Y. — The Sabres have one game over the span of nine days scheduled for this Thursday, and it could be in jeopardy now with the team dealing with a COVID outbreak.
Forwards Alex Tuch, Peyton Krebs, and Anders Bjork entered COVID protocol on Tuesday, with defenseman Henri Jokiharju missing practice out of precaution for more testing.
"It's crazy and scary all in one because this is the craziness that we're dealing with with the roster every day, and then you know what's inside our bubble," head coach Don Granato said after Tuesday's practice.
While the Sabres return players from COVID, their NHL roster remains thin.
Kyle Okposo was added to protocol midway through Monday's practice, with Casey Fitzgerald also added to the list.
"This is a new level," Granato said, bluntly.
"It wasn't like this last year. You didn't have this many days where you're waiting and trying to practice plan and losing guys an hour before, 45 minutes, half an hour before. And you've got to readjust immediately to what you do."
As a coach, Don Granato often asks his team for advice. The decision on whether or not to practice on Tuesday was no different.
"They want to go. They want to keep moving forward. And so I do feel as much chaos is going on around us, they're still very focused on moving forward."
2 On Your Side's Julianne Pelusi asked Granato how he is handling the constant crisis management.
"I have full confidence that whatever's dealt to us, we're going to make the best circumstance out of it, and I feel that our staff and our players and the attitude and the outlook is in a good place. So when adversity happens, we don't dwell," Granato said. "You don't see players come in here and make excuses. We talk about the reality... we're not making an excuse for it. We just have to deal with it."
"When we think of, you know, how we need to change things within this franchise, it's handling adversity. That's the biggest component to becoming successful," Granato continued.
"The team that wins the Stanley Cup is not the team that didn't have adversity. They're probably the team that handled it the best and overcame it more than anybody else."