Game Preview: 2/12/16 vs. MTL

GAME-DAY RESOURCES

Game Notes NHL Stats Press Clips

LAST GAME
Thursday, February 11
Buffalo 1 at Philadelphia 5
Goals: McGinn
Goalie: Lehner (23 saves/28 shots)
PP: 0/6; PK: 3/3; Shots: Buffalo 42 – Philadelphia 28

CURRENT INJURIES – (Man Games Lost: 240)
Player (injury, first game missed) – total games missed

Cody McCormick (blood clot, Oct. 8; injured reserve) – 55 games
Tyler Ennis (upper body, Dec. 31; injured reserve) – 18 games
Zemgus Girgensons (lower body, Feb. 9; injured reserve) – 2 games
Johan Larsson (lower body, Feb. 9) – 2 games

TRANSACTIONS IN PAST 7 DAYS
2/10:
Recalled F Justin Bailey from Rochester (AHL); Placed F Zemgus Girgensons on IR

UPCOMING GAMES
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.
Sunday, Feb. 21: Pittsburgh at Buffalo, 12:30 p.m.
Wednesday, Feb. 24: Buffalo at Anaheim, 10:30 p.m.

TONIGHT’S GAME
CANADIENS at SABRES

  • This is the third of five meetings between the Sabres and Canadiens this season.
  • Last meeting: Buffalo defeated Montreal, 4-2, in Montreal on Feb. 3
  • Next meeting: Thursday, March 10 in Montreal
  • The Sabres are 4-5-1 in their last 10 games vs. the Canadiens; 4-4-2 at home
  • This is the 269th game all-time between Buffalo and Montreal; Buffalo has a 123-107-38 series record.
  • The Sabres are 70-38-25 at home against the Canadiens all-time.

THIS DATE IN SABRES HISTORY

  • The Sabres are 4-8-6 all-time on February 12.
  • February 12, 1983: Craig Ramsay (broken foot) sees his consecutive games played streak end at 776 games, missing his first game in nearly 10 years.
  • February 12, 2008: Thomas Vanek scores his first career hat trick, leading the Sabres to a 5-1 win at Ottawa.

THINGS YOU SHOULD KNOW

  • The Sabres have gone 15-7-2 in their last 24 games against the Canadiens.
  • Buffalo has more wins against Montreal (123) than against any other NHL team. The Sabres have 121 wins against the Bruins, but have played 11 more games against Boston than against Montreal.
  • The road team has won each of the last four matchups between these teams and 10 of the last 13.
  • Ryan O’Reilly has eight points (4+4) in nine career games against Montreal.
  • Cody Franson has 10 points (1+9) in his last 12 games against the Canadiens, including four assists in two games this season.
  • After last night’s game, Evander Kane ranked second in the league with 4.2 shots per game.
  • Ryan O’Reilly (56.9%) ranked ninth in the league in faceoff percentage after last night’s game. O’Reilly leads the league with 1,391 faceoffs taken, accounting for 42.3% of Buffalo’s total faceoffs.

LOCAL KID MAKES GOOD

  • Buffalo native Justin Bailey made his NHL debut last night at Philadelphia, becoming the first Sabres player to record seven shots in his debut since Alexander Mogilny did so on Oct. 5, 1989 vs. Quebec.
  • Bailey became the fifth Buffalo-born player to appear in a regular-season game for the Sabres, joining Marcus Foligno, Patrick Kaleta, Tim Kennedy and Scott Thomas.
  • Aside from these five, 10 other Sabres players in franchise history have been born in New York State:
    • Peter Ciavaglia (Albany); Jerry D’Amigo (Binghamton); Zach Bogosian and Mike Hurlbut (Massena); Tracey Pratt (New York City); Rory Fitzpatrick, Brian Gionta and Derek Whitmore (Rochester); Tim Connolly (Syracuse); Connor Knapp (York)

BACK-TO-BACK
Tonight’s game wraps up Buffalo’s 10th of 15 sets of back-to-back games this season, which began last night with a 5-1 loss at Philadelphia. The Sabres are 3-7-0 in the first game of back-to-back sets and 4-4-1 in the second game so far this season. Buffalo’s point breakdown in previous back-to-back sets this season is: four points (1), three points (1), two points (4), one point (0) and zero points (3).

LOGGING BIG MINUTES

  • Rasmus Ristolainen was ranked 10th in the NHL after last night’s game with an average ice time of 25:15 per game. Only Alexei Zhitnik (four times) has averaged more minutes per game in a full season with the Sabres.
  • After last night’s game, Ryan O’Reilly (21:53) led all NHL forwards in average ice time per game and Evander Kane (20:58) ranked third. 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 23:43 per game in his 59 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.

YOUNG GUNS

  • Jack Eichel finished last night’s game with 22 points (7+15) in his last 23 games, a stretch which included a career-best, four-game point streak (2+4) from Dec. 30 to Jan. 5.
  • Eichel finished last night’s game ranked in the top five among NHL rookies in goals (T-3rd, 16), assists (T-3rd, 20), points (3rd, 36) and shots (1st, 167).
  • If they maintain their current pace, Eichel (16+20) and Sam Reinhart (16+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 (16) 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 36 points (16+20) in 55 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

  • After last night’s game, Rasmus Ristolainen ranked in the top 15 among NHL defensemen in goals (T-15th, 8), assists (T-9th, 25), points (T-10th, 33), shots (11th, 133), time on ice per game (10th, 25:15) and multi-point games (T-10th, 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 33 points (8+25) in 55 games, Ristolainen is on pace for 49 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 24 of 55 games this season, posting a 7-16-1 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 23 of the team’s 55 games this season, going 9-11-3 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-MTL CONNECTIONS
Former Sabres:

  • Brian Flynn played in parts of three seasons for Buffalo, totaling 41 points (17+24) in 159 games.
  • Drafted by the Sabres in the first round (13th overall) of the 2009 NHL Draft, Zack Kassian played in 27 games for the Sabres during the 2011-12 season. He had seven points (3+4) in 27 games.
  • Torrey Mitchell played 60 games for the Sabres during parts of the 2013-14 and 2014-15 seasons. He had 14 points (7+7) and 30 penalty minutes during his time in Buffalo.

Former Canadiens:

  • Brian Gionta played for the Canadiens from 2009-2014, registering 173 points (97+76) in 303 games played.  He also served as the team’s captain from 2010-2014.
  • Josh Gorges was a member of the Canadiens from 2006-2014, registering 88 points (13+75) over 464 games played.

Carlo Colaiacovo:

  • He and P.K. Subban were both born in Toronto, Ontario.
  • Colaiacovo and Lars Eller played together for the St. Louis Blues during the 2009-10 season.

Cody Franson:

  • Played with Ben Scrivens for the Toronto Maple Leafs from 2011-2013.

Chad Johnson:

  • Teammates with Dale Weise for the New York Rangers during the 2010-11 season.

Evander Kane:

  • He and P.K. Subban both represented Canada at the 2009 World Junior Championship.

Johan Larsson:

  • Played with Tom Gilbert and Torrey Mitchell for the Minnesota Wild from during the 2012-13 season.

Jake McCabe:

  • Represented the United States alongside Alex Galchenyuk at the 2013 World Junior Championship and the 2014 World Championship. Jeff Petry was also a part of the 2014 World Championship squad.

Jamie McGinn:

  • He and Dale Weise share a birthday (Aug. 5, 1988).
  • Played with Torrey Mitchell for the San Jose Sharks from 2009-2012.

Ryan O’Reilly:

  • Played with Tomas Fleischmann for the Colorado Avalanche during part of the 2010-11 season.

NHL Draft:

  • Jamie McGinn (36th overall by San Jose) and Jeff Petry (45th overall by Edmonton) were both second-round picks in the 2006 NHL Draft.
  • Johan Larsson (56th overall by Minnesota) and Devante Smith-Pelly (42nd overall by Anaheim) were both taken in the second round of the 2010 NHL Draft.

SABRES REAL-TIME STATS LEADERS
Hits:
Kane (120), Deslauriers (118), Foligno (110)
Blocked Shots: Gorges (111), Ristolainen (87), McCabe (62)
Shots: Kane (189), Eichel (167), Ristolainen (133)

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: 1-2-2 (4), 11/19, 3/19, 11/12

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 … 1 game … 100 career games played
Brian Gionta … 3 games … 900 career games played
Robin Lehner … 5 games … 100 career games played
Assists
Josh Gorges … 3 assists … 100 career assists
Points
Ryan O’Reilly … 9 points … 300 career points

RECENT MILESTONES
Daniel Catenacci … 1st NHL game … Feb. 6 at BOS
Justin Bailey … 1st NHL game … Feb. 11 at PHI

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