Simmonds relishes opportunity to help Sabres’ playoff push

Buffalo Sabres

New Jersey Devils right wing Kyle Palmieri (21) congratulates right wing Wayne Simmonds (17) after Simmonds scored a goal during the third period of an NHL hockey game against the Detroit Red Wings, Thursday, Feb. 13, 2020, in Newark, N.J. (AP Photo/Kathy Willens)

BUFFALO, N.Y. (AP) — Wayne Simmonds arrived in Buffalo eager for an opportunity to be back in the NHL playoff hunt and the chance to help the Sabres’ late-season push.

The 31-year-old power forward became expendable in New Jersey with the Devils failing to meet expectations by all but being mathematically eliminated from contention.

The Sabres gave up a conditional fifth-round draft pick to acquire Simmonds.

They were interested in his leadership ability and to upgrade their depth at forward.

Buffalo is 7-3-1 in its past 11 games. It opens a critical four-game road trip at Colorado on Wednesday. 

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