Game Preview: 4/2/13 at PIT

GAME-DAY RESOURCES

Game Notes NHL Stats Press Clips

LAST GAME
Saturday, March 31
Boston 2 at Buffalo 0
Goals: N/A
Goalie: Miller (29 saves/31 shots)
PP: 0/4; PK: 0/0; Shots: Boston 31 – Buffalo 26

CURRENT INJURIES – (Man Games Lost: 94)
Alexander Sulzer (lower body, Feb. 26; injured reserve) – 17 games
Thomas Vanek (upper body, March 28) – 3 games
Ville Leino (upper body, March 31) – 1 game

TRANSACTIONS IN PAST 7 DAYS
3/30:
Acquired a second-round draft pick and a conditional fifth-round draft pick from the St. Louis Blues in exchange for Jordan Leopold.
4/1: Recalled C Luke Adam from Rochester (AHL); Acquired a second-round pick in the 2014 NHL Entry Draft and a second-round pick in the 2015 NHL Entry Draft from the Lost Angeles Kings in exchange for Robyn Regehr.
4/2: Recalled D Adam Pardy from Rochester (AHL)

UPCOMING GAMES
Friday, April 5:
Ottawa at Buffalo, 7 p.m.
Sunday, April 7: New Jersey at Buffalo, 7:30 p.m.
Tuesday, April 9: Buffalo at Winnipeg, 8 p.m.
Thursday, April 11: Montreal at Buffalo, 7:30 p.m.
Saturday, April 13: Philadelphia at Buffalo, 3 p.m.

TONIGHT’S GAME
SABRES at PENGUINS

-This is the second of three meetings between the Sabres and Penguins this season.
-Last meeting: Pittsburgh defeated Buffalo, 4-3, in Buffalo on Feb. 17.
-These teams next meet on Saturday, April 20 in Pittsburgh.
-The Sabres are 2-8-0 in their last 10 games vs. the Penguins; 2-8-0 on the road.
-This is the 172nd game all-time between Buffalo and Pittsburgh; Buffalo trails the series with a 62-68-41 record. Buffalo is 22-44-19 on the road against the Penguins all-time.

THIS DAY IN SABRES HISTORY
April 2, 2011:
Thomas Vanek scores his 200th NHL goal in a 5-4 overtime loss at Washington, becoming the 11th player in franchise history to score 200 goals as a member of the Buffalo Sabres.

STORYLINES

  1. The Sabres are winless in their last four games (0-2-2) and will look to avoid their first five-game winless streak since they lost five in a row from Jan. 14-21, 2012.
  2. The Sabres have had 14 of their last 17 games decided by one goal. Buffalo is 6-3-5 in those 14 games and 9-8-6 in their 23 one-goal games this season.
  3. If he plays tonight, Ryan Miller will break Dominik Hasek’s franchise record of 491 games played for the Sabres.

TRENDS

  • Tyler Ennis has eight points (2+6) in his last eight games.
  • Andrej Sekera has six points (1+5) in his last seven games.
  • Christian Ehrhoff has five points (2+3) in his last six games.
  • Ville Leino has six points (2+4) in his last eight games.
  • Marcus Foligno has eight points (4+4) in his last 12 games.

FRANCHISE GOALTENDERS
If he plays tonight, Ryan Miller will appear in his 492nd NHL game, all as a member of the Buffalo Sabres. In doing so, Miller will break the Sabres’ franchise record for most games played by a goaltender, set by Dominik Hasek.  Miller tied Hasek’s record on Sunday vs. BOS. Between the two, Miller and Hasek own the franchise record in every major goaltending statistic.

Below is a comparison of each goaltender’s statistics as a member of the Sabres:

Dominik Hasek

Ryan Miller

Games Played

491

491

Seasons

9: 1992-92 to 2000-01

10: 2002-03 to Present

Record

234-170-86 (.565)

263-162-56 (.581)

Record with shootout wins counted as ties

234-170-86 (.565)

223-162-96 (.563)

Minutes

28,663:43

28,783:16

Saves

13,308

13,278

Goals Against

1,062

1,241

Goals Against Average

2.22

2.59

Save Percentage

.926

.914

Shutouts

55

28

30-win Seasons

5

7

Playoff Games Played

68

47

Playoff Record

37-30 (.552)

25-22 (.532)

Playoff Goals Against Average

2.04

2.47

Playoff Save Percentage

.930

.917

Playoff Shutouts

6

3

SOPHOMORE SURGE
After finishing fifth in NHL rookie scoring last year with 41 points (19+22), Cody Hodgson leads all sophomores (defined as 2011-12 rookies) in goals and points (stats as of 4/1):

Player

Team

GP

G

A

P

Cody Hodgson

BUF

36

12

16

28

Slava Voynov

LAK

35

4

18

22

Brayden Schenn

PHI

34

6

15

21

Cody Eakin

DAL

34

6

13

19

Carl Hagelin

NYR

34

8

10

18

LOGGING BIG MINUTES
Defenseman Christian Ehrhoff has averaged 25:12 TOI per game this season, the highest average of his career and the highest per-game average by a Sabres skater since Alexei Zhitnik skated 26:32 per game in the 2002-03 season. Jason Pominville’s average TOI of 20:57 is the highest by a Sabres forward since Miroslav Satan averaged 21:23 in 2002-03.

MEET THE NEW BOSS
After being named interim head coach of the Buffalo Sabres on Feb. 20, Ron Rolston became the 16th head coach in Sabres history. Rolston joins the Sabres after spending the 2011-12 and 2012-13 seasons as head coach of the Rochester Americans (AHL), compiling a 63-44-17 regular-season record. Prior to joining the Americans, Rolston spent seven seasons as head coach with USA Hockey’s National Team Development Program, where he led the United States Under-18 team to three gold medals and a silver medal in four tournaments as head coach at the IIHF World Under-18 Championship.

CHANGING OF THE GUARD
The Sabres hired Ron Rolston to serve as interim head coach on Feb. 20 after the Sabres got off to a 6-10-1 (.382) start. It was the first time the Sabres had replaced their head coach mid-season since John Muckler took over for Rick Dudley on Dec. 11, 1991 after a 9-15-4 (.393) start to the season. The 1991-92 team went 22-22-8 under Muckler, ending the season 31-37-12 and finishing third in the Adams Division to clinch a playoff spot.

BUF-PIT CONNECTIONS
BUF D Mike Weber was born in Pittsburgh.

BUF AC Kevyn Adams and PIT RW Craig Adams played together for five seasons (2001-2007) on the Carolina Hurricanes, including the Hurricanes’ 2005-06 Stanley Cup win.  The pair would reunite in 2007-08, when they both played for the Chicago Blackhawks.

BUF LW John Scott, PIT D Brooks Orpik and PIT LW Chris Kunitz were all born on Sept. 26. Scott, born in 1982, is the youngest while Orpik, born in 1980, and Kunitz, born in 1979, are a year apart.

BUF C Steve Ott and DAL D Matt Niskanen played together for four seasons (2007-08 –2010-11) on the Dallas Stars. PIT LW James Neal also played in Dallas for three of those seasons (2008-09 – 2010-11).

Ott and Orpik were both first-round draft selections in the 2000 NHL Entry Draft. Orpik, selected by Pittsburgh, was the 18th overall pick and Ott, chosen by Dallas, was the 25th overall selection.

Orpik and BUF G Ryan Miller both played for Team USA at the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver.

BUF LW Thomas Vanek and PIT G Marc-Andre Fleury were both first-round draft selections in the 2003 NHL Entry Draft. Fleury was the first overall pick, while Vanek was selected fifth overall.

BUF D Christian Ehrhoff and PIT LW Tanner Glass played together for two seasons (2009-10, 2010-11) on the Vancouver Canucks. BUF C Cody Hodgson also played with the Canucks for part of the 2010-11 season.

BUF D Alexander Sulzer and PIT G Tomas Vokoun were teammates for one season on the 2010-11 Florida Panthers.

BUF RW Drew Stafford and PIT C Evgeni Malkin were both first-round selections in the 2004 NHL Entry Draft. Malkin was the second overall pick and Stafford was picked 13th overall.

BUF LW Thomas Vanek and PIT D Paul Martin played together at the University of Minnesota in 2002-03, when the Golden Gophers defeated the Wildcats of New Hampshire, 5-1, in the national championship game to capture the program’s fifth title. Vanek was named the tournament’s Most Outstanding Player and the game was played at his future home ice, HSBC Arena in Buffalo.

BUF C Tyler Ennis, BUF RW John Scott, and PIT D Deryk Engelland were all born in Edmonton.

SABRES REAL-TIME STATS LEADERS
Hits:
Ott (149), Weber (88), Foligno (77)
Blocked Shots: Ehrhoff (65), Weber (63), Sekera (54)
Shots: Vanek (94), Hodgson (93), Pominville (93)

SABRES’ RECORD IN 10 GAME SEGMENTS [W-L-OTL (PTS), GF/GA, PP, PK]
1-10:
3-6-1 (7), 30/37, 6/36, 32/40
11-20: 4-6-0 (8), 20/27, 1/36, 35/42
21-30: 4-3-3 (11), 29/31, 5/36, 26/35
31-40: 2-2-2 (6), 15/18, 4/22, 14/21

OVERTIME RESULTS (1-2; 94-93 all-time)
January 29 vs. Toronto: L, 4-3 (GWG-Frattin, 4:58)
March 16 vs. Ottawa: L, 4-3 (GWG-Turris, 3:54)
March 19 at Montreal: W, 3-2 (GWG-Ott, 2:16)

SHOOTOUT RESULTS (4-4; 47-41 all-time)
February 7 vs. Montreal: W, 5-4 (GDG-Pominville)
February 28 at Florida: W, 4-3 (GDG-Vanek)
March 2 vs. New Jersey: W, 4-3 (GDG-Pominville)

March 3 at NY Rangers: L, 3-2 (GDG-Nash)
March 7 at New Jersey: L, 3-2 (GDG-Clarkson)
March 21 vs. Toronto: W, 5-4 (GDG-Ott)
March 28 at Florida: L, 5-4 (GDG-Mike Santorelli)
March 30 vs. Washington: L, 4-3 (GDG-Matt Hendricks)

MILESTONES APPROACHING (Player … Needs … Milestone)
Games Played

Patrick Kaleta … 8 games … 300 career games played
Ryan Miller … 9 games … 500 career games played
Goals
Thomas Vanek … 1 goal … 247 career goals (ties Mike Foligno, 6th in franchise history)
Assists
Jason Pominville … 6 assists … 275 career assists (ties Dale Hawerchuk, 8th in franchise history)

RECENT MILESTONES
Steve Ott … 600 career games played … 3/28 at FLA
Christian Ehrhoff … 600 career games played … 3/30 vs. WSH
Ryan Miller … 491 career games played (tied Dominik Hasek, most in franchise history) … 3/31 vs. BOS

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