Game Preview: 12/1/16 vs. NYR


Game Notes NHL Stats Press Clips

Tuesday, November 29
Buffalo 5 at Ottawa 4
Goals: O’Reilly (2), Okposo, Eichel, Reinhart
Goalie: Lehner (5 saves/6 shots); Nilsson (26 saves/29 shots)
PP: 3/5; PK: 2/4; Shots: Ottawa 35 – Buffalo 28

CURRENT INJURIES – (Man Games Lost: 115)
Player (injury, first game missed) – total games missed

Cody McCormick (blood clots, Oct. 13; injured reserve) – 22 games
Nicolas Deslauriers (knee, Oct. 30; injured reserve) – 15 games
Zach Bogosian (MCL sprain, Nov. 3) – 13 games
Tyler Ennis (groin, Nov. 9; injured reserve) – 10 games
Dmitry Kulikov (lower back, Nov. 11) – 9 games
Robin Lehner (hip, Dec. 1) – 0 games

Assigned F William Carrier, F Cal O’Reilly and F Cole Schneider to Rochester (AHL)
11/27: Recalled F William Carrier from Rochester (AHL)
11/29: Activated F Jack Eichel from IR

Saturday, Dec 3:
Boston at Buffalo, 1 p.m.
Monday, Dec. 5: Buffalo at Washington, 7 p.m.
Tuesday, Dec. 6: Edmonton at Buffalo, 7 p.m.
Friday, Dec. 9: Washington at Buffalo, 7 p.m.
Tuesday, Dec. 13: Los Angeles at Buffalo, 7 p.m.


  • This is the first of three meetings between the Sabres and Rangers this season.
  • Last meeting: Buffalo defeated New York 4-3 in New York on April 2
  • Next meeting: Tuesday, Jan. 3 in New York
  • The Sabres are 1-9-0 in their last 10 games vs. the Rangers; 2-7-1 at home
  • This is the 175th game all-time between Buffalo and New York; Buffalo has a 79-62-33 series record.
  • The Sabres are 47-28-13 at home against the Rangers all-time.


  • The Sabres are 10-5-3 all-time on December 1.
  • December 1, 1993: Dominik Hasek stops 33 Tampa Bay shots to record his second of 55 regular-season shutouts as a member of the Sabres in a 3-0 win against the Lightning.
  • December 1, 2006: The Sabres top the Rangers 4-3 in a shootout to cap an 11-game unbeaten streak (9-0-2) against New York.


  • Cody Franson has an assist in each of his last two games. A point tonight would give him his longest point streak since October 2015.
  • Kyle Okposo has 13 points (4+9) in his last 11 games against the Rangers, including two points in each of his last three.
  • Brian Gionta has 12 points (6+6) in his last 14 games against the Rangers, including a point in each of the three matchups last season.
  • Zemgus Girgensons had three goals in three games against the Rangers in 2015-16.
  • Jack Eichel has at least a point in each of his three career games against the Rangers, totaling four assists in those games.
  • Johan Larsson has a point in each of his last two games against the Rangers (1+1).


  • Jack Eichel returned to the Sabres‘ lineup on Tuesday at Ottawa after missing the team’s first 21 games with a high-ankle sprain. In his first game of the season, Eichel recorded two points (1+1) and now has points in a career-best six straight games played (2+6).
  • With Tuesday’s win, the Sabres improved to 25-14-4 (.628) in Eichel’s career when he records a point and 9-3-1 (.731) when he has at least two.
  • Tonight’s game will be Eichel’s first game at KeyBank Center since last season’s finale. He had 10 points (5+5) in his last nine home games of the 2015-16 season.


  • Buffalo’s goaltenders have the fourth-best combined save percentage* (.927) in the league. They also have the fifth-best save percentage during 5-on-5 play (.935).
  • The Sabres last finished a season with a combined save percentage* above .920 in the 2009-10 season (.924, Ryan Miller/Patrick Lalime/Jhonas Enroth) and have topped the team’s current mark only twice in franchise history: 1998-99 (.930, Dominik Hasek/Dwayne Roloson/Martin Biron) and 1997-98 (.928, Hasek/Steve Shields)

Top Five NHL Goaltending Tandems by Save Percentage*

Minnesota Wild 45 684 639 .934
Montreal Canadiens 49 731 682 .933
Columbus Blue Jackets 44 626 582 .930
Buffalo Sabres 52 712 660 .927
Washington Capitals 44 580 536 .924


Top Five NHL Goaltending Tandems by 5-on- 5 Save Percentage*

Chicago Blackhawks 30 609 579 .951
Montreal Canadiens 33 598 565 .945
Minnesota Wild 34 573 539 .941
Washington Capitals 31 482 451 .936
Buffalo Sabres 36 558 522 .935

*Combined save percentage excludes empty net goals


  • Buffalo is ranked fifth in the NHL in both power play percentage (22.7%) and team faceoff percentage (51.5%).
  • Ryan O’Reilly ranks second among all NHL forwards with an average ice time of 21:57 per game. O’Reilly finished the 2015-16 season ranked first among forwards with 21:44 of ice time per game and has averaged 20:45 per game since the beginning of the 2014-15 season, leading all NHL forwards during that time frame.
  • O’Reilly also ranks eighth in the NHL among players with at least 200 faceoffs in faceoff percentage (57.5%).
  • Matt Moulson ranks second in the NHL with six power-play goals.
  • Rasmus Ristolainen ranks fifth among all NHL skaters in average ice time per game (26:18). He is tied for second among all NHL defensemen and eighth among all NHL players with nine power-play points.

*All stats as of 11/30

Former Rangers:

  • Justin Falk spent part of the 2013-14 season with the Rangers, playing in 21 games for New York, where he compiled two points (0+2).

Local Players:

  • Adam Clendening was born in Niagara Falls, New York.

Jack Eichel:

  • Represented the United States alongside Brady Skjei at the 2014 World Junior Championship.

Justin Falk:

  • Teammates with Michael Grabner for the Spokane Chiefs (WHL) from 2005-2007.

Cody Franson:

  • Teammates with Marc Staal at the 2007 World Junior Championship for Team Canada.
  • Played for the Nashville Predators with Kevin Klein from 2009-2011.

Josh Gorges:

  • Represented Canada at the 2004 World Junior Championship with Kevin Klein.

Derek Grant:

  • Teammates with Mika Zibanejad for the Ottawa Senators from 2012-2014.
  • Was a member of the Calgary Flames with Josh Jooris during the 2015-16 season.

Evander Kane:

  • Played with Marc Staal at the 2010 World Championship for Team Canada.
  • Represented Canada at the 2011 World Championship along with Rick Nash.

Robin Lehner:

  • Played alongside Mika Zibanejad for the Ottawa Senators from 2011-2015.
  • Was a member of the Ottawa Senators during the 2014-15 season along with Matt Puempel.

Jake McCabe:

  • Played with J.T. Miller and Jimmy Vesey at the 2013 World Junior Championship representing the United States. Miller was also a member of the 2009-10 United States NTDP squad along with McCabe.
  • Skated alongside Kevin Hayes at the 2014 World Championship representing the United States. The two were also members of the United States NTDP during the 2009-10 season.
  • Represented the United States with Brady Skjei at the 2016 World Championship.

Matt Moulson:

  • Was a member of the New York Islanders from 2010-2013 along with Michael Grabner.

Anders Nilsson:

  • Teammates with Michael Grabner for the New York Islanders during the 2011-12 season and again during the 2013-14 season.
  • Was a member of the Edmonton Oilers during the 2015-16 season along with Adam Clendening.

Ryan O’Reilly:

  • Teammates with Nick Holden for the Colorado Avalanche from 2013-2015.

Kyle Okposo:

  • Played with Michael Grabner for the New York Islanders from 2010-2015.
  • Represented the United States with Chris Kreider at the 2010 World Championship.
  • Shares a hometown of St. Paul, Minnesota with Ryan McDonagh.

2011 World Junior Championship:

  • The 2011 Swedish World Junior Championship team is well represented between the Sabres and Rangers, having two players for each team on their current rosters. Both Robin Lehner and Johan Larsson appeared on the team along with Jesper Fast and Oscar Lindberg. Lehner, Larsson and Lindberg also appeared together in the 2009 World U18 Championship.

2015 Hobey Baker Memorial Award:

  • Jack Eichel and Jimmy Vesey were both finalists for the 2015 Hobey Baker Memorial Award. Eichel won the award, while Vesey was a runner-up.

NHL Draft:

  • Kyle Okposo (7th overall) and Michael Grabner (14th overall) were selected in the first round of the 2006 NHL Draft.
  • Evander Kane (4th overall) and Chris Kreider (19th overall) were both selected in the first round of the 2009 NHL Draft.
  • Ryan O’Reilly (33rd overall), Robin Lehner (46th overall) and Brandon Pirri (59th overall) were all taken in the second round of the 2009 NHL Draft
  • Johan Larsson (56th overall) was selected one pick before Oscar Lindberg (57th overall) in the second round of the 2010 NHL Draft. Zemgus Girgensons (14th overall) was selected in the first round of the 2012 NHL Draft along with Brady Skjei 28th overall).

Foligno (72), Ristolainen (52), Gorges (50)
Blocked Shots: Gorges (43), Ristolainen (41), McCabe (24)
Shots: Okposo (61), O’Reilly (57), Reinhart (56)

SABRES’ RECORD IN 10 GAME SEGMENTS [W-L-OTL (PTS), GF/GA, PP, PK] 1-10: 4-4-2 (10), 23/24, 8/35, 26/31
11-20: 3-4-3 (9), 15/26, 6/31, 28/36
21-30: 1-1-0 (2), 6/7, 3/9, 5/8

OVERTIME RESULTS (0-2; 102-107 all-time)
Oct. 18 at EDM: L, 4-3 (GWG-Monahan)
Nov. 11 vs. NJD: L, 2-1 (GWG-Greene)

SHOOTOUT RESULTS (1-3; 68-61 all-time)
Oct. 25 at PHI: L, 4-3 (GDG-Giroux)
Nov. 9 vs. OTT: L, 2-1 (GDG-Ryan)
Nov. 19 vs. PIT: W, 2-1 (GDG-C. O’Reilly)
Nov. 23 vs. DET: L, 2-1 (GDG-Vanek)

MILESTONES APPROACHING (Player … Needs … Milestone)

Dan Bylsma … 5 wins … 300 NHL wins
Marcus Foligno … 1 point … 100 NHL points
Cody Franson … 7 points … 200 NHL points


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