Sabres defenseman Jake McCabe suffers season-ending knee injury


Buffalo Sabres defenseman Jake McCabe (19) reacts after taking an injury and being helped off the ice during the third period of an NHL hockey game against the New Jersey Devils, Saturday, Feb. 20, 2021, in Newark, N.J. (AP Photo/John Minchillo)

BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) – You could tell when Jake McCabe needed help getting off the ice in Saturday’s game against the Devils, it was a bad injury and the Sabres confirmed that on Monday.

McCabe’s season is over after he tore his ACL, MCL and meniscus in his right knee during the third period against New Jersey on Saturday. The expected recovery time is six to eight months.

“I had tears two nights ago already so it was pretty clear on the doctors’ first assessment that we were dealing with a really serious setback. The confirmation just underlines the pain that we feel for the person first and foremost and then the player that we’ve lost for the season. It’s an amazing setback in addition to what the group’s gone through after Covid and he was part of the Covid package,” Sabres head coach Ralph Krueger said on Monday.

“It’s another shot but we have a group of character and everybody needs to step up and help to fill the big hole that Caber leaves with his injury.”

This comes just less than a week after McCabe returned to the lineup after spending time on the NHL’s COVID-19 list when he tested positive for coronavirus. When talking to reporters, McCabe said he only had mild symptoms.

This is a big blow to the Sabres’ blue line as now both of their top two defensemen are out as Rasmus Ristolainen still hasn’t returned since battling COVID-19 even though he is off the NHL’s protocol list. Ristolainen has been out since January 31st and was one of the first Buffalo players to land on the Covid list when their outbreak started.

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