Game Preview: 2/9/16 vs. FLA

GAME-DAY RESOURCES

Game Notes NHL Stats Press Clips

LAST GAME
Saturday, February 6
Buffalo 1 at Boston 2 (OT)
Goals: Reinhart
Goalie: Lehner (36 saves/38 shots)
PP: 0/3; PK: 2/2; Shots: Boston 38 – Buffalo 38

CURRENT INJURIES – (Man Games Lost: 232)
Player (injury, first game missed) – total games missed

Cody McCormick (blood clot, Oct. 8; injured reserve) – 53 games
Tyler Ennis (upper body, Dec. 31; injured reserve) – 16 games
Marcus Foligno (lower body, Feb. 6) – 1 game

TRANSACTIONS IN PAST 7 DAYS
2/3:
Activated F Nicolas Deslauriers and F Sam Reinhart from IR
2/5: Recalled F Daniel Catenacci from Rochester (AHL)

UPCOMING GAMES
Thursday, Feb. 11:
Buffalo at Philadelphia, 7 p.m.
Friday, Feb. 12: Montreal at Buffalo, 7 p.m.
Sunday, Feb. 14: Colorado at Buffalo, 12:30 p.m.
Tuesday, Feb. 16: Buffalo at Ottawa, 7:30 p.m.
Friday, Feb. 19: Buffalo at Columbus, 7 p.m.

TONIGHT’S GAME
PANTHERS at SABRES

  • This is the fourth and final meeting between the Sabres and Panthers this season.
  • Last meeting: Florida defeated Buffalo, 5-1, in Buffalo on Jan. 5
  • The Sabres are 2-8-0 in their last 10 games vs. the Panthers; 3-6-1 at home.
  • This is the 88th game all-time between Buffalo and Florida; Buffalo has a 46-34-7 series record.
  • The Sabres are 25-15-4 at home against the Panthers all-time.

THIS DATE IN SABRES HISTORY

  • The Sabres are 8-4-4 all-time on February 9.
  • February 9, 1984: Gilbert Perreault records his 700th NHL assist in an 8-5 win vs. New Jersey.

THINGS YOU SHOULD KNOW

  • After going 2-0-2 in their last four games, the Sabres are looking to gain a point in a fifth consecutive game tonight for the first time since the team compiled points in nine straight (7-0-2) from March 10 to 27, 2012.
  • Tonight’s game is Buffalo’s fifth consecutive game against an Atlantic Division opponent; the Sabres have gone 2-0-2 in the first four and are 7-10-3 against their divisional rivals this season.
  • Ryan O’Reilly has 11 points (5+6) in his last nine games against the Panthers.
  • David Legwand has 16 points (5+11) in 20 career games against Florida.
  • Entering play Monday, Evander Kane ranked third in the league with 4.1 shots per game.
  • Ryan O’Reilly (56.9%) ranked 10th in the league in faceoff percentage entering play Monday. O’Reilly leads the league with 1,347 faceoffs taken, accounting for 42.4% of Buffalo’s total faceoffs.

ROBBIN’ LEHNER

  • In his six games played since returning from a high ankle sprain that sidelined him for 39 games, Robin Lehner has logged a 2-3-1 record with a .940 save percentage and a 2.17 goals-against average.
  • Lehner has logged a save percentage of at least .943 in each of his last five games, stopping at least 33 shots in each appearance.
  • Lehner has allowed two goals or fewer in each of his last six road games, a stretch which dates back to a 35-save performance on Feb. 10, 2015 at Buffalo as a member of the Ottawa Senators.

LOGGING BIG MINUTES

  • Rasmus Ristolainen was ranked 10th in the NHL entering play Monday with an average ice time of 25:13 per game. Only Alexei Zhitnik (four times) has averaged more minutes per game in a full season with the Sabres.
  • Before Monday night’s games, Ryan O’Reilly (21:53) led all NHL forwards in average ice time per game and Evander Kane (21:10) ranked second. The pair currently own the two highest average career ice times by Sabres forwards. Michael Peca (20:18) is the only other forward with an average over 20 minutes.
  • With an average ice time of 23:48 per game in his 57 games played since joining the Sabres last season, Zach Bogosian owns the third-highest average ice time ever recorded by a Sabres player, trailing only Alexei Zhitnik (531 GP, 25:32) and Christian Ehrhoff (192 GP, 23:55).

Note: The NHL began tracking ice time in the 1997-98 season.

FINISHING STRONG AFTER THE BREAK
Buffalo is 555-424-193 (.556) all-time in games after the All-Star break. This includes a record of 104-71-31 (.580) in those games since the lockout. The Sabres are 1-0-2 (.667) since the All-Star break so far this season.
Note: These totals do not include games after breaks for the Olympic Games.

YOUNG GUNS

  • Jack Eichel enters tonight’s game with 21 points (7+14) in his last 21 games, a stretch which included a career-best, four-game point streak (2+4) from Dec. 30 to Jan. 5.
  • Eichel entered Monday night ranked in the top five among NHL rookies in goals (3rd, 16), assists (T-3rd, 19), points (3rd, 35) and shots (1st, 157).
  • If they maintain their current pace, Eichel (16+19) and Sam Reinhart (14+9) would be the first pair of Sabres rookies to surpass the 30-point mark since Thomas Vanek (48) and Jason Pominville (30) did so in 2005-06.
  • Eichel (16) and Reinhart (14) are also on pace to become the second pair of rookies in Sabres history to each record 20 goals in the same season. The first pair was Danny Gare (31) and Peter McNab (22) in 1974-75.
  • With 35 points (14+19) in 53 games, Eichel is on pace for 54 points this season. If he reaches the 50-point mark, he will become the ninth Sabres rookie to record more than 50 points in a season. He would be the first since Derek Plante (1993-94) and the second-youngest to do so, trailing only Phil Housley (1982-83).

FINNISHING TOUCH

  • Entering play Monday, Rasmus Ristolainen ranked in the top 15 among NHL defensemen in goals (T-14th, 8), assists (T-12th, 24), points (T-13th, 32), shots (T-10th, 127), time on ice per game (10th, 25:13) and multi-point games (T-9th, 7).
  • Ristolainen is the first Sabres defenseman to record seven multi-point games in a season since Jordan Leopold in 2010-11. Jaroslav Spacek (10 multi-point games in 2008-09) was the last Sabres defenseman to record more than seven.
  • His four power-play goals are the most by a Sabres defenseman since 2010-11 (Jordan Leopold, 5).
  • With 32 points (8+24) in 53 games, Ristolainen is on pace for 50 points this season. If he reaches the 50-point mark, Ristolainen would be the first Sabres defenseman with 50 points in a season since Garry Galley (1995-96) and the youngest to reach that mark since Phil Housley.

OUTSHOOTING OPPONENTS
The Sabres have outshot their opponents in 23 of 53 games this season, posting a 7-15-1 record in those games. Last season, the team finished the season 5-5-0 in 10 total games when outshooting their opponents.

POSSESSION PROGRESSION
The Sabres have led their opponent in even-strength shot attempts (corsi) in 22 of the team’s 53 games this season, going 9-10-3 in those games. Buffalo only led their opponents in even-strength shot attempts eight times throughout the entire 2014-15 season, going 3-5-0 in those eight games. (Data courtesy of war-on-ice.com)

BUF-FLA CONNECTIONS
Former Sabres:

  • Drafted by the Sabres in the sixth round of the 1997 NHL Draft, Brian Campbell played in Buffalo for parts of eight seasons (1999-00 – 2007-08). As a Sabre, Campbell tallied 176 points (32+144) in 391 games. Campbell was selected as an NHL All-Star in 2007 and 2008.

Zach Bogosian:

  • Played with Al Montoya for the Winnipeg Jets from 2012-2014. The two also played together for the United States at the 2009 World Championship.

Carlo Colaiacovo:

  • Colaiacovo, Brandon Pirri and Reilly Smith were all born in Toronto, Ontario.

Marcus Foligno:

  • Played with Erik Gudbranson and Quinton Howden for Team Canada at the 2011 World Junior Championship held in Buffalo.

Cody Franson:

  • Played with Dave Bolland for the Toronto Maple Leafs for part of the 2013-14 season.

Chad Johnson:

  • Teammates with Reilly Smith and Shawn Thornton for the Boston Bruins during the 2013-14 season.

Evander Kane:

  • Played with Al Montoya for the Winnipeg Jets from 2012-2014.

Jake McCabe:

  • Represented the United States alongside Vincent Trochek at the 2013 World Junior Championship and the 2014 World Championship.

Matt Moulson:

  • Played with Al Montoya for the New York Islanders from 2010-2013.

Ryan O’Reilly:

  • He and Aaron Ekblad share a birth date. O’Reilly was born on Feb. 7, 1991, and Ekblad was born on Feb. 7, 1996.
  • Played with Erik Gudbranson for Team Canada at the 2009 World U-18 Championship.

Mike Weber:

  • He and Vincent Trocheck were both born in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

NHL Draft:

  • Ryan O’Reilly, Robin Lehner and Brandon Pirri were all second-round picks in the 2009 NHL Draft. O’Reilly was selected 33rd overall by Colorado, Lehner went 46th overall to Ottawa and Pirri was taken 59th overall by Chicago.
  • Nicolas Deslauriers (84th overall) and Reilly Smith (69th overall) were both taken in the third round of the 2009 NHL Draft.
  • Mark Pysyk (23rd overall), Erik Gudbranson (3rd overall), Nick Bjugstad (19th overall) and Quinton Howden (25th overall) were all first-round draft picks in the 2010 NHL Draft.
  • Tonight’s game features two players who were taken in the second round of the 2010 NHL Draft: Alex Petrovic (36th overall) and Johan Larsson (56th overall by Minnesota).
  • Rasmus Ristolainen (8th overall) and Alexander Barkov (2nd overall) were both selected in the first round of the 2013 NHL Draft.
  • Sam Reinhart (2nd overall) and Aaron Ekblad (1st overall) were the top two picks in the 2014 NHL Draft.

SABRES REAL-TIME STATS LEADERS
Hits:
Kane (118), Deslauriers (113), Foligno (108)
Blocked Shots: Gorges (108), Ristolainen (85), McCabe (62)
Shots: Kane (178), Eichel (157), Ristolainen (127)

SABRES’ RECORD IN 10 GAME SEGMENTS [W-L-OTL (PTS), GF/GA, PP, PK]
1-10:
3-7-0 (6), 23/32, 9/35, 19/27
11-20: 5-3-2 (12), 21/21, 5/27, 23/29
21-30: 4-5-1 (9), 29/28, 8/29, 20/23
31-40: 3-6-1 (7), 20/27, 4/35, 17/21
41-50: 5-5-0 (10), 22/26, 6/25, 26/28
51-60: 1-0-2 (4), 6/7, 1/9, 7/8

OVERTIME RESULTS (2-2; 100-103 all-time)
Oct. 27 at PHI: W, 4-3 (GWG-Girgensons, 2:29)

Nov. 14 vs. SJS: L, 2-1 (GWG-Marleau, 2:59)
Dec. 12 vs. LAK: W, 2-1 (GWG-O’Reilly, 3:19)
Feb. 6 at BOS: L, 2-1 (GWG-Marchand, 2:32)

SHOOTOUT RESULTS (1-4; 66-55 all-time)
Oct. 21 vs. TOR: W, 2-1 (GDG-Moulson)

Nov. 19 at STL: L, 3-2 (GDG-Steen)
Dec. 1 at DET: L, 5-4 (GDG-Richards)
Dec. 19 vs. CHI: L, 3-2 (GDG-Kane)
Feb. 4 vs. BOS: L, 3-2 (GDG-Spooner)

MILESTONES APPROACHING (Player … Needs … Milestone)
Games Played

Mark Pysyk … 2 games … 100 career games played
Brian Gionta … 5 games … 900 career games played
Robin Lehner … 7 games … 100 career games played
Assists
Josh Gorges … 4 assists … 100 career assists

RECENT MILESTONES
Daniel Catenacci … 1st NHL Game … Feb. 6 at BOS

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