Buffalo Sabres forward Jeff Skinner talked to reporters after being a healthy scratch for the third straight game on Thursday and said he doesn't think he's learned anything extra by watching.
"In this league, there's a lot of ups and downs," Skinner explained, per John Vogl of The Athletic. "The situation as a whole, it's something that obviously there's a lot of emotions involved. You try to take time to digest that. ... But the more important thing is to keep moving forward."
"I don't think you learn anything extra by not being out there, but obviously this situation is maybe not that straightforward in the fact that lessons are being learned is maybe more of a vague concept."
"I try and help the team win as much as I can. That's my main focus. Obviously, the coach is trying to do that, too...He has 23 other guys to worry about. He has a team to coach. I just have to play hockey. ... It's not relevant really whether we agree on everything."
When he was asked if he'd rather be with another team, Skinner said no. "I love being a Sabre. I love the city of Buffalo. I wouldn't have chosen to stay here if that wasn't the case, so that answer is simple.
Skinner's agent Don Meehan recently stepped in to address the situation, according to a report from The Buffalo News.
Skinner is in the second year of an eight-year, $72 million deal he signed with the Sabres in June 2019. His $9 million cap hit makes him the second-highest paid player on the roster.
He has struggled to produce under head coach Ralph Krueger. Skinner is averaging just 11:56 of ice time per game this season at 5-on-5 and has zero goals and one assist in 14 games.
In 2019-20, his first season under Krueger, Skinner had 14 goals and 23 points in 59 games.
Skinner was skating on the fourth line on Friday.
In his first season in Buffalo in 2018-19, Skinner scored a career-high 40 goals and matched his career-high in points with 63 primarily playing alongside Sabres captain Jack Eichel.
Drafted seventh overall by the Carolina Hurricanes in 2010, Skinner won the Calder Trophy in 2011 after making the NHL roster as an 18-year-old. He recorded 31 goals and 63 points in 82 games in his rookie year.
Skinner was acquired by the Sabres on Aug. 2, 2018 from the Hurricanes in exchange for Cliff Pu and three draft picks.