Going into the 2013 season much was made of the Tyler Ennis, Marcus Foligno, and Drew Stafford line.
The unit ended 2012 lighting up the scoresheet for the Sabres, and it was expected that this could become the team’s top scoring line this year. Unfortunately for Buffalo, what has happened so far has been the exact opposite of what they had hoped. The Foligno/Ennis/Stafford line has a combined two points in four games, and has not been able to re-find the success they had when they put up 49 points in 13 games.
Foligno said that it’s not a lack of chemistry between the three for the lack of production, it’s the lack of bounces.
“They are a lot of chances, we’ve just had some tough luck,” he said. “We’ve had posts, and some other chances that we’ve flubbed.”
It’s not just their line, however that has had trouble scoring. Other than the top line of Thomas Vanek, Jason Pominville, and Cody Hodgson, — which also scored the only goal in Friday’s 3-1 loss to Carolina — no one has been able to provide offensive support for a team that has had to rely on the play of Ryan Miller just to get out of games with victories.
It’s a problem that has head coach Lindy Ruff thinking about changing things up in order to get some production from his other players.
“I tried to be patient,” said Ruff. “We were hoping the Ennis line could catch a little traction, but I think right now we can try anything.”
Foligno admits that it’s tough right now not being able to produce they way he knows his line can, but by working as hard as possible, he says, it’s only a matter of time before they start to reap the benefits.
“We believe in each other,” said Foligno of his line. “We know that we can get it done, and soon enough the bounces will come.”
Trying to fight through their lack of scoring issues is all fine and dandy, but they may not have the time to patch things up before the lines are mixed around as Ruff didn’t rule out changing the lines, with the exception of one, for Sunday’s game in Washington.
“You’ll probably see some lines get shaked up,” he said. “(But) that top line will stay where it’s at.”
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