Belfour resting his back

TERRY KOSHAN -- Toronto Sun

, Last Updated: 9:33 AM ET

Ed Belfour did not accompany his teammates to Buffalo yesterday morning but could join them for games in New York tomorrow and in Pittsburgh on Sunday.

The Maple Leafs goalie had an injection in his wonky back on Thursday morning and was told to rest.

The 40-year-old was to work out with the training staff yesterday before deciding whether to travel. Still, until further notice, Mikael Tellqvist will be backed up by Jean-Sebastien Aubin.

"He wanted to nip it in the bud," coach Pat Quinn said. "That's why he sought the treatment as quickly as he did. He feels that he is going to be fine, but he is not the doctor either. Iguess he knows himself pretty well."

Belfour had back surgery two years ago.

PULLING FOR RUFF

Quinn said his thoughts are with Sabres coach Lindy Ruff, whose 11-year-old daughter Madeleine recently had an unidentified mass discovered on her brain. Ruff was behind the Sabres bench last night but has skipped some recent practices to be with his daughter, one of his four children.

"We are all praying for him, "Quinn said. "He is a heck of a coach, he has done a terrific job in this city and his teams have always competed hard. If there is anything (similar) in the family, they will be competing hard too."

ROY RULING THE ROOST

One of the hottest Sabres right now is NHL sophomore Derek Roy. The 5-foot-9, 188-pound centre, who was a driving force for the Kitchener Rangers in their Memorial Cup run in 2003, was second among Buffalo scorers since Jan. 1, recording 23 points in 25 games.

Roy recorded his first two NHL hat tricks in the past couple of weeks and has been popping up on highlight reels regularly.

Roy played in 49 games for the Sabres in 2003-04 but has benefitted from a big difference in the NHL this season -- the calling of hooking and holding.

"Two years ago I could not really use my speed because of the hooking and holding," the 22-year-old Ottawa native said. "You would fight through it, and but then you would get tired after 20 seconds (on the ice). There is a lot more flow to the game now. I have a lot more confidence."


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