Game Preview: 4/5/16 at NJD

GAME-DAY RESOURCES

Game Notes NHL Stats Press Clips

LAST GAME
Saturday, April 2
Buffalo 4 at NY Rangers 3
Goals: R. O’Reilly (2), Girgensons, Moulson
Goalie: Johnson (33 saves/36 shots)
PP: 0/3; PK: 2/2; Shots: NY Rangers 36 – Buffalo 24

CURRENT INJURIES – (Man Games Lost: 347)
Player (injury, first game missed) – total games missed
Cody McCormick (blood clot, Oct. 8; injured reserve) – 79 games
Tyler Ennis (upper body, Dec. 31; injured reserve) – 42 games
Cody Franson (neck, Feb. 21) – 20 games
Jason Kasdorf (lower body, March 16) – 9 games
Robin Lehner (ankle, March 18) – 8 games
Evander Kane (upper body, March 29) – 3 games

TRANSACTIONS IN PAST 7 DAYS
4/5: Recalled F Justin Bailey from Rochester (AHL)

REMAINING GAMES
Friday, April 8:
Columbus at Buffalo, 7 p.m.
Saturday, April 9: Buffalo at NY Islanders, 7:30 p.m.

TONIGHT’S GAME
SABRES at DEVILS

  • This is the third and final meeting between the Sabres and Devils this season.
  • Last meeting: New Jersey defeated Buffalo, 2-0, in Buffalo on Dec. 15
  • The Sabres are 3-4-3 in their last 10 games vs. the Devils; 4-3-3 on the road.
  • This is the 148th game all-time between Buffalo and New Jersey; Buffalo has a 73-49-25 series record.
  • The Sabres are 33-24-15 on the road against the Devils all-time.

THIS DATE IN SABRES HISTORY

  • The Sabres are 12-5-0 all-time on April 5.
  • April 5, 1980: Mike Ramsey scores his first NHL goal in a 9-1 win at Pittsburgh.
  • April 5, 2013: Ryan Miller sets the Sabres’ career saves record, passing Dominik Hasek with his 13,309th save in a 4-2 win vs. Ottawa.

THINGS YOU SHOULD KNOW

  • The Sabres went 7-4-4 (.600) in March, making it the team’s best month since April 2013 (8-4-0).
  • Ryan O’Reilly has eight points (4+4) in his last eight games against the Devils. O’Reilly enters tonight’s game with nine points (3+6) in nine games since returning from a lower-body injury that sidelined him for 11 games and 18 points (3+15) in his last 18 games overall.
  • The Sabres need a win tonight to avoid going winless in six straight games to the Devils for the first time since they went 11 straight matchups without a win (0-7-4) from Feb. 10, 2002 to Oct. 28, 2005.
  • Chad Johnson is 9-2-1 in his last 13 appearances with a .923 save percentage and a 2.30 goals-against average.

PUTTING IN EXTRA TIME

  • 10 of the last 21 games between the Sabres and Devils have been settled in overtime or a shootout, including seven of the last 13.
  • With 12 shootouts in the 30 matchups since the beginning of 2007-08 season, the Sabres have played more shootouts against the Devils than any other non-divisional opponent (Boston/Ottawa-13), going 7-5 in those shootouts.

20 BY 25
The Sabres have four 20-goal scorers this season, each aged 25 or younger: Jack Eichel (23), Sam Reinhart (22), Evander Kane (20) and Ryan O’Reilly (20). It is the first time the Sabres have had four players in their age 25 seasons* or younger score 20 goals since 1987-88 (Dave Andreychuk, Phil Housley, Christian Ruuttu and Ray Sheppard). *All ages used are the players’ ages as of Feb. 1 of the given season

SHOOTING THE LIGHTS OUT

  • Evander Kane leads all Sabres and ranks ninth in the NHL with 271 shots this season despite missing 14 games to injury. Kane’s 271 shots rank 11th in franchise history and his 4.2 shots per game rank fourth in franchise history behind only Alexander Mogilny (4.68 in 1992-93), Rick Martin (4.43 in 1974-75) and Dave Andreychuk (4.21 in 1991-92).
  • Rasmus Ristolainen ranks third among all Sabres and eighth among all NHL defensemen with 198 shots this season. Only four other Sabres defenseman have logged at least 198 shots in a season: Jocelyn Guevremont (1975-76, 1976-77), Phil Housley (1983-84, 1986-87, 1987-88, 1989-90), Jerry Korab (1974-75, 1977-78 and 1978-79) and John Van Boxmeer (1979-80, 1980-81).
  • Jack Eichel ranks second among all Sabres and leads all NHL rookies with 231 shots this season. Danny Gare (274 in 1974-75) and Rick Martin (266 in 1971-72) were the only two Sabres rookies ever to record more shots than Eichel’s rookie total.
    • Since 1987-88, only 15 NHL rookies have recorded more shots on goal in a season than Eichel’s 231:
Player Age* Season Team Shots
Alex Ovechkin 20 2005-2006 WSH 425
Teemu Selanne 23 1992-1993 WIN 387
Sidney Crosby 18 2005-2006 PIT 278
Gabriel Landeskog 19 2011-2012 COL 270
Brian Leetch 20 1988-1989 NYR 268
Pavel Bure 20 1991-1992 VAN 268
Sergei Fedorov 21 1990-1991 DET 259
Logan Couture 21 2010-2011 SJS 253
Dion Phaneuf 20 2005-2006 CGY 242
Evgeni Malkin 20 2006-2007 PIT 242
Nathan MacKinnon 18 2013-2014 COL 241
Filip Forsberg 19 2014-2015 NSH 237
Tony Granato 24 1988-1989 NYR 234
Tony Amonte 21 1991-1992 NYR 234
Alexei Yashin 20 1993-1994 OTT 232
Jack Eichel 19 2015-2016 BUF 231

*As of Feb. 1

JACK ATTACK

  • Jack Eichel leads the Sabres with 23 goals this season, the highest total by a Sabres player since 2011-12 (Jason Pominville, 30) and the highest by a Sabres rookie since 2005-06 (Thomas Vanek, 25). If he finishes the season with the team lead, Eichel will be the first Sabres rookie to lead the team in goals since Ray Sheppard did so in the 1987-88 season.
  • Entering play Monday, Eichel was ranked in the top five among NHL rookies in goals (T-2nd, 23), assists (4th, 29), points (2nd, 52) and shots (1st, 231).
  • With his goal on March 7 at Toronto, Eichel (19 years, 131 days) became the youngest 20-goal scorer in Sabres history, besting Pierre Turgeon (19 years, 140 days on Jan. 15, 1989) by nine days.
  • With his goal on March 26 vs. Winnipeg, Eichel became the ninth Sabres rookie to record 50 points in a season. He is the first to do so since Derek Plante (1993-94) and the second-youngest to do so, trailing only Phil Housley (1982-83).

YOUNG GUNS

  • Jack Eichel (52 points) and Sam Reinhart (40) are the first pair of Sabres rookies to reach the 35-point mark since Ray Sheppard (65), Pierre Turgeon (42) and Calle Johansson (42) all did so in 1987-88.
  • Eichel (23 goals) and Reinhart (22) are the third pair of rookies in Sabres history to each record 20 goals in the same season, joining Danny Gare (31) and Peter McNab (22) in 1974-75 and Gilbert Perreault (38) and Steve Atkinson (20) in 1970-71.

LOGGING BIG MINUTES

  • Rasmus Ristolainen is ranked 11th in the NHL with an average ice time of 25:16 per game. Only Alexei Zhitnik (four times) has averaged more minutes per game in a full season with the Sabres.
  • Ryan O’Reilly (21:45) leads all NHL forwards in average ice time per game and Evander Kane (21:02) ranks 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 23:37 per game in his 83 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).
  • Jack Eichel’s average ice time of 19:06 is the ninth-highest ever recorded by a rookie forward and the highest ever by Sabres rookie forward, topping the next highest (Cody Hodgson- 20 GP, 17:16) by more than a minute. Sam Reinhart (16:47 this season) is the only other Sabres rookie forward to top 16 minutes per game.

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

POSSESSION PROGRESSION

  • The Sabres have outshot their opponents in 33 of 79 games this season, posting an 11-18-4 record in those games. Last season, the team finished the season 5-5-0 in 10 total games when outshooting their opponents.
  • The Sabres have led their opponent in even-strength shot attempts (corsi) in 28 of the team’s 79 games this season, going 12-12-4 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-NJD CONNECTIONS
Former Devils:

  • Brian Gionta played for the Devils from 2001-2009, tallying 312 points (152+160) in 473 games. Selected by New Jersey in the third round (82nd overall) of the 1998 NHL Draft, Gionta still holds the club’s single-season franchise record for goals (48), which he set during the 2005-06 campaign.

Carlo Colaiacovo:

  • Represented Team Canada alongside Travis Zajac at the 2011 World Championship.
  • Played with Jordin Tootoo for the Detroit Red Wings during the 2012-13 season.

Jack Eichel:

  • Played with John Moore for the United States at the 2015 World Championship.

Brian Gionta:

  • Brian’s younger brother, Stephen Gionta plays for the Devils. The two were born in Rochester, N.Y.

Chad Johnson:

  • Played with David Schlemko for the Phoenix Coyotes during the 2012-13 season.

Johan Larsson:

  • Represented Team Sweden alongside Jacob Josefson at the 2009 World U18 Championship.

David Legwand:

  • Played with Jordin Tootoo for the Nashville Predators from 2003-2012. They were reunited during the 2013-14 season when Legwand was traded to the Detroit Red Wings.

NHL Draft:

  • Johan Larsson (56th overall by Minnesota) and Devante Smith-Pelly (42nd overall by Anaheim) were both selected in the second round of the 2010 NHL Draft.

SABRES REAL-TIME STATS LEADERS
Hits:
Deslauriers (199), Foligno (181), Kane (171)
Blocked Shots: Gorges (161), Ristolainen (132), McCabe (107)
Shots: Kane (271), Eichel (231), Ristolainen (198)

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: 4-3-3 (11), 29/30, 6/34, 30/33
61-70: 4-4-2 (10), 23/24, 3/30, 17/24
71-80: 5-2-2 (12), 27/23, 5/27, 26/28

OVERTIME RESULTS (4-3; 101-105 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)
March 1 vs. EDM: L, 2-1 (GWG-McDavid, 3:48)
March 12 vs. CAR: W, 3-2 (GWG-Eichel, 4:59)
March 16 vs. MTL: L, 3-2 (GWG-Byron, 3:15)

SHOOTOUT RESULTS (2-7; 67-58 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)
Feb. 16 at OTT: L, 2-1 (GDG-Ryan)
March 5 vs. MIN: L, 3-2 (GDG-Pominville)
March 7 at TOR: W, 4-3 (GDG-Reinhart)
March 29 at PIT: L, 5-4 (GDG-Letang)

UPCOMING MILESTONES (Player … Needs … Milestone)
Games Played

Zemgus Girgensons … 1 game … 200 career games played
Goals
Mark Pysyk … 2 goals … 3 goals (career high)
Assists
Josh Gorges … 1 assist … 100 career assists
Marcus Foligno … 1 assist … 14 assists (career high)
Ryan O’Reilly … 1 assist … 39 assists (career high)
Points
Johan Larsson … 1 point … 17 points (career high)

RECENT MILESTONES
Chad Johnson … 100th NHL game … April 2 at NYR

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