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This is Buffalo’s second of seven preseason games after opening camp on Wednesday, Sept. 11 at First Niagara Center; it is their second of four road games during the 2013 preseason.
Buffalo and Columbus have played 13 pre-season games all-time. The Sabres are 7-6-0 in preseason contests against the Blue Jackets; 2-2-0 at home, 3-3-0 in Columbus. Three of the 13 preseason games between the Sabres and Blue Jackets have been played at neutral site venues, with the Sabres going 2-1-0.
The last time the teams met in the preseason was on Sept. 25, 2011 in Columbus. Tyler Myers scored Buffalo’s lone goal in a 4-1 defeat. The first of three regular season meetings between the Sabres and Blue Jackets will take place on Thursday, Oct. 10 in Buffalo. The teams will then meet twice in eight days with a game at First Niagara Center on Saturday, Jan. 18 followed by a trip to Columbus on Saturday, Jan. 25.
After scoring twice on Sunday, including a shorthanded tally, Zemgus Girgensons leads the Sabres with two points in the preseason. Rasmus Ristolainen, Buffalo’s first selection (8th overall) in the 2013 NHL Entry Draft, led all Sabres with 23:22 of ice time in Sunday’s contest, including a team-high 5:20 on the penalty kill; newly acquired defenseman Jamie McBain was close behind with an ice time of 23:21. Goaltender Matt Hackett, who took over for Jhonas Enroth midway through the game, made 11 saves on 12 shots through regulation and overtime, then denied three shooters in the shootout to earn his first win as a member of the Sabres.
The Sabres are 139-147-49 all-time in the preseason. Buffalo is 26-11-3 in preseason action since the 2005-06 season; they finished the 2011 preseason 4-1-1, going 2-1-1 on the road and have started the 2013 preseason 1-0-0 after a 5-4 shootout win at Montreal on Sunday. These totals only include NHL games; the Sabres also defeated Adler Mannheim, 8-3, as part of the 2011 NHL Premiere Series in Germany.
Buffalo’s next game is Thursday (7 p.m.), as the Sabres host the Hurricanes in their first home game of the preseason.