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Gaustad to debut Thursday

Paul Gaustad, out since the preseason because of surgery on his thumb, is skating on a regular line this morning in Amherst Pepsi Center. He is centering the fourth line with Andrew Peters and Patrick Kaleta on his wings. It's a sign Gaustad is ready to return, possibly as soon as Thursday's game against Tampa Bay.

We'll have to wait for Lindy Ruff's post-practice comments. Of course, the Sabres could be getting him ready in case fellow center Adam Mair is disciplined for his post-game transgressions Monday night when he went into the Ottawa dressing room area.

Mike Weber is still with the Sabres, with Henrik Tallinder not skating because of a cut above his ankle suffered Saturday in Colorado. Jochen Hecht and Tim Connolly are skating with Matt Ellis as extras.


Gaustad will indeed play Thursday against the Lightning. Weber will also play his second game, as Tallinder is out until at least the weekend.

Mair, meanwhile, is out $2,500 in fines but has not been suspended.

---John Vogl


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