Game Preview: 12/11/14 vs. CGY

GAME-DAY RESOURCES

Game Notes NHL Stats Press Clips

LAST GAME
Tuesday, December 9
Los Angeles 0 at Buffalo 1
Goals: Ennis
Goalie: Enroth (34 saves/34 shots)
PP: 1/4; PK: 0/2; Shots: Los Angeles 34 – Buffalo 16

CURRENT INJURIES – (Man Games Lost: 82)
Player (injury, first game missed) – total games missed

Matt Hackett (lower body, Oct. 9; injured reserve) – 28 games
Andrej Meszaros (upper body, Nov. 29) – 5 games
Tyson Strachan (lower body, Dec. 6) – 2 games

TRANSACTIONS IN PAST 7 DAYS
N/A

UPCOMING GAMES
Saturday, Dec. 13:
Florida at Buffalo, 7 p.m.
Monday, Dec. 15: Ottawa at Buffalo, 7 p.m.
Tuesday, Dec. 16: Buffalo at Winnipeg, 8 p.m.
Saturday. Dec. 20: Colorado at Buffalo, 7 p.m.
Sunday, Dec. 21: Buffalo at Boston, 7 p.m.

TONIGHT’S GAME
FLAMES at SABRES

  • This is the first of two meetings between the Sabres and Flames this season.
  • Next meeting: Tuesday, Jan. 27 in Calgary
  • The Sabres are 4-5-1 in their last 10 games vs. the Flames; 8-0-2 at home
  • This is the 100th game all-time between Buffalo and Calgary/Atlanta; Buffalo has a 48-34-17 series record.
  • The Sabres are 30-13-6 at home against the Flames all-time.

THIS DATE IN SABRES HISTORY

  • The Sabres are 9-8-1 all-time on December 11.
  • December 11, 1992: The Sabres get goals from seven different players in a 9-3 rout of the Hartford Whalers.
  • December 11, 1993: Dominik Hasek records his third of five shutouts in a 12-game span, blanking the Hartford Whalers with a 25-save performance.

THINGS YOU SHOULD KNOW

  • Tonight’s game is the second in a four-game homestand for the Sabres, tying the team’s four-game stretch from Nov. 2 to 8 as the second-longest homestand of the season.
  • The Sabres are 7-3-0 in their last 10 games. The last time the team had 14 points in a 10-game span was from March 19 to April 7, 2013 (6-2-2). Before the current stretch, they hadn’t won seven of 10 games since March 2012.
  • Buffalo enters tonight with wins in three straight home games. A win tonight would give the team their first four-game winning streak at home since they won five in a row from Dec. 17, 2013 to Jan. 4, 2014.

SABRES-FLAMES

  • The Sabres need a win tonight to avoid losing three straight games to the Flames for the first time since Jan. 12 to Oct. 6, 1996.
  • The Sabres are 14-3-2 in their last 19 home games against the Flames, with the last regulation loss coming on March 15, 1996.
  • With points in their last 10 home games against Calgary (8-0-2), the Sabres are two games from matching their series-record 12-game point streak in home games against the Flames set from March 11, 1979 to Nov. 10, 1985 (11-0-1).
  • Chris Stewart leads all Sabres with 17 points (9+8) in 24 career games against the Flames.
  • Both Sabres goaltenders have impressive career stat lines against the Flames:
    • Jhonas Enroth: 1-0-1, 1.49 GAA, .946 SV%
    • Michal Neuvirth: 2-0-0, 1.92 GAA, .934 SV%

MY NAME IS JHONAS

  • Jhonas Enroth is expected to start in goal tonight in his 100th NHL appearance. He will become the 13th goaltender to play 100 games for the Sabres.
  • In his last eight games, Enroth has compiled a 6-2-0 record, with a .946 save percentage and a 1.79 goals-against average.
  • According to Elias Sports Bureau, Enroth’s fourth career shutout on Tuesday vs. LAK made him the first goaltender in NHL history to record his first four shutouts in 1-0 wins.

EXPANDED ROLE FOR MYERS
Entering Wednesday’s night’s games, Tyler Myers ranks ninth in the league with an average time on ice of 25:13 per game. He skated a career-high 31:34 on Nov. 29 at MTL and has averaged 25:56 in his last 10 games despite playing only two overtime games during that stretch. Myers last led the Sabres in ice time in a season in his rookie season of 2009-10, when he averaged 23:44 per game.

“BALSO PAR ZEMGU”

  • Second-year Latvian forward Zemgus Girgensons ended week three of the 2015 NHL All-Star Game Fan Vote with 803,805 votes. This total makes him a distant leader, ahead of second-place Patrick Kane (375,758) and third-place Jonathan Toews (367,962). Nearly 82 percent of his total votes were cast by Latvians and 80 percent were from Sabres fans.
  • His eight goals through the first 28 games this season match his total from his 70-game rookie season.
  • Girgensons has topped 19 minutes of ice time in seven of his last eight games and leads all Sabres forwards with an average ice time of 18:32 per game.

IN THE LINE OF FIRE

  • Josh Gorges ranks fifth in the NHL with 74 blocked shots entering play Wednesday despite missing seven games with a knee injury in November.
  • Gorges has blocked 13.4 percent of all opponent shot attempts taken with him on the ice this season, the third-highest percentage among NHL defensemen who have played at least five games (see chart below) entering Monday’s games.
  • His best full-season on-ice shot blocking percentage was 13.0 percent in 2011-12 with Montreal. No NHL-regular defenseman has topped 14 percent in a full season since the league started counting blocked shots in 2005-06.

Top NHL Defensemen, On-Ice Shot Blocking Percentage

(min. five games played)

Rank Player Team GP BS On-IceBS%
1 Christopher Tanev VAN 29 75 14.3%
2 Kris Russell CGY 27 83 13.4%
3 Josh Gorges BUF   21 74 13.4%
4 Michael Stone ARI 28 79 13.2%
5 Radko Gudas TBL 25 52 12.5%

HEATING UP BEFORE WINTER
With a .500 record (6-6-1) in November, the Sabres had their best month since they went 5-5-2 in December 2013. The 13 points earned by the team last month was Buffalo’s highest total in a month since the team went 8-4-0 in April 2013.

BUF-CGY CONNECTIONS
Former Sabres:

  • Paul Byron appeared in eight games for the Sabres during the 2010-11 season and recorded two points (1+1).
  • Dennis Wideman was originally drafted by the Sabres in the eighth round (241st overall) of the 2002 NHL Draft, but did not play any games as a member of the club.

Tyler Ennis:

  • Played with Kris Russell for the Medicine Hat Tigers (WHL) from 2005-2007.
  • He and Deryk Engelland were both born in Edmonton, Alberta.

Jhonas Enroth:

  • Played with Mikael Backlund for Team Sweden at the 2008 World Junior Championship.

Marcus Foligno:      

  • Foligno (1991) and David Jones (1984) were both born on Aug. 10.

Brian Gionta:

  • Played with Raphael Diaz for the Montreal Canadiens from 2011-2014.

Josh Gorges:

  • Played with Raphael Diaz for the Montreal Canadiens from 2011-2014.

Cody Hodgson:        

  • He and Mark Giordano were both born in Toronto, Ontario.
  • Played with Mason Raymond for the Vancouver Canucks from 2010-2012.

Cody McCormick:

  • Played with David Jones for the Colorado Avalanche from 2007-2009.

Andrej Meszaros:

  • Teammates with Brian McGrattan for the Ottawa Senators from 2005-2008.
  • Played with Karri Ramo for the Tampa Bay Lightning during the 2008-09 season.

Torrey Mitchell:          

  • Mitchell (1985) and Joe Colborne (1990) were both born on Jan. 30.

Tyler Myers:

  • Myers (1990) and Ladislav Smid (1986) were both born on Feb. 1.
  • Represented Team Canada alongside Mark Giordano and Mason Raymond at the 2010 World Championship.

Michal Neuvirth:

  • Played with Dennis Wideman for the Washington Capitals from 2010-2012.

Rasmus Ristolainen:

  • Played with Markus Granlund for Team Finland at the 2013 World Junior Championship.

Chris Stewart:

  • Played with Kris Russell for the St. Louis Blues from 2011-2013.

Nikita Zadorov:

  • Shares a birthday with Markus Granlund. Granlund was born on April 16, 1993, and Zadorov was born on the same day two years later in 1995.

NHL Draft:

  • Matt Moulson (263rd overall) and David Jones (288th overall) were both chosen in the ninth round of the 2003 NHL Draft.
  • Drew Stafford (13th overall), Andrej Meszaros (24th overall) and Ladislav Smid (7th overall) were all chosen in the first round of the 2004 NHL Draft.
  • Cody Hodgson (10th overall), Tyler Myers (12th overall), Tyler Ennis (12th overall) and Joe Colborne (16th overall) were all selected in the first round of the 2008 NHL Draft.
  • Rasmus Ristolainen (8th overall), Nikita Zadorov (16th overall) and Sean Monahan (6th overall) were all selected in the first round of the 2013 NHL Draft.

SABRES REAL-TIME STATS LEADERS
Hits:
Deslauriers (92), Foligno (75), Weber (71)
Blocked Shots: Gorges (74), Myers (60), Weber (51)
Shots: Ennis (64), Moulson (60), Stewart (57)

SABRES’ RECORD IN 10 GAME SEGMENTS [W-L-OTL (PTS), GF/GA, PP, PK]
1-10:
2-8-0 (2), 11/33, 0/32, 33/39
11-20: 3-5-2 (8), 23/36, 4/27, 28/39
21-30: 5-3-0 (10), 15/15, 2/21, 16/20

OVERTIME RESULTS (0-1; 97-99 all-time)
October 30 vs. Boston: L, 3-2 (GDG-Marchand, 1:20)

SHOOTOUT RESULTS (4-1; 61-47 all-time)
October 14 at Carolina: W, 4-3 (GDG-Girgensons)
November 2 vs. Detroit: W, 3-2 (GDG-Girgensons)

November 5 vs. Montreal: L, 2-1 (GDG-Parenteau)
November 29 at Montreal: W, 4-3 (GDG-Flynn)
December 2 vs. Tampa Bay: W, 2-1 (GDG-Hodgson)

MILESTONES APPROACHING (Player … Needs … Milestone)
Games Played

Jhonas Enroth … 1 game … 100 career games played
Zemgus Girgensons … 2 games … 100 career games played
Cody McCormick … 3 games … 400 career games played
Tyler Ennis … 5 games … 300 career games played
Points
Torrey Mitchell … 3 points … 100 career points
Brian Gionta … 6 points … 500 career points

RECENT MILESTONES
N/A

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