Game Preview: 1/12/17 at TBL

GAME-DAY RESOURCES

Game Notes NHL Stats Press Clips

LAST GAME
Tuesday, January 10
Philadelphia 1 at Buffalo 4
Goals: Reinhart, Carrier, Kane, Foligno
Goalie: Nilsson (39 saves/40 shots)
PP: 1/2; PK: 1/2; Shots: Philadelphia 40 – Buffalo 27

CURRENT INJURIES – (Man Games Lost: 200)
Player (injury, first game missed) – total games missed

Cody McCormick (blood clots, Oct. 13; injured reserve) – 40 games
Tyler Ennis (groin, Nov. 9; injured reserve) – 28 games
Dmitry Kulikov (lower back, Dec. 29; injured reserve) – 6 games
Johan Larsson (wrist, Jan. 3; injured reserve) – 4 games
Josh Gorges (hip, Jan. 7) – 2 games
Robin Lehner (illness, Jan. 10) – 1 game

TRANSACTIONS IN PAST 7 DAYS
1/10:
Recalled G Linus Ullmark from Rochester (AHL); Placed F Johan Larsson on IR; Placed F Derek Grant on waivers
1/11: F Derek Grant claimed off waivers by Nashville

UPCOMING GAMES
Friday, Jan. 13:
Buffalo at Carolina, 7:30 p.m.
Monday, Jan. 16: Dallas at Buffalo, 1 p.m.
Tuesday, Jan. 17: Buffalo at Toronto, 7:30 p.m.
Friday, Jan. 20: Detroit at Buffalo, 7 p.m.
Saturday, Jan. 21: Buffalo at Montreal, 7 p.m.

TONIGHT’S GAME
SABRES at LIGHTNING

  • This is the second of four meetings between the Sabres and Lightning this season.
  • Last meeting: Tampa Bay defeated Buffalo 4-1 in Buffalo on Nov. 17, 2016
  • Next meeting: Saturday, March 4 in Buffalo
  • The Sabres are 2-8-0 in their last 10 games vs. the Lightning; 4-6-0 on the road
  • This is the 92nd game all-time between Buffalo and Tampa Bay; Buffalo has a 52-32-7 series record.
  • The Sabres are 28-15-3 on the road against the Lightning all-time.

THIS DATE IN SABRES HISTORY

  • The Sabres are 11-6-3 all-time on January 12.
  • January 12, 1978: Gilbert Perreault scores all three Sabres goals to collect his fourth hat trick of the season in a 6-3 loss at Cleveland.

THINGS YOU SHOULD KNOW

  • The Sabres are looking for their first five-game point streak since March 2012 after going 3-0-1 in their last four games.
  • If they score three goals tonight, the Sabres will have scored at least three goals in five consecutive games for the first time since they did so in six straight from March 23 to April 3, 2015.
  • Jack Eichel has three points (2+1) in his last two games against the Lightning.
  • Taylor Fedun has a point in each of his two career games against Tampa Bay.
  • Cody Franson has three points (2+1) in his last two games against the Lightning.

WHO’S HOT?

  • Rasmus Ristolainen has 18 points (3+15) his last 19 games.
  • Ryan O’Reilly has recorded 15 points (4+11) in his last 15 games, including two-point games in each of his three games since returning from a four-game absence following an appendectomy.
  • Sam Reinhart has recorded 12 points (3+9) in his last 10 games.
  • Marcus Foligno has a goal in each of his last three games and six total points (4+2) in his last nine.
  • Jack Eichel has tallied six points (3+3) in his last seven games.

ROAD WARRIORS

  • Ryan O’Reilly has 15 points (6+9) in 15 road games this season, including seven points (2+5) in his last six.
  • Kyle Okposo has 16 points (8+8) in 20 road games this season, including points in each of his last three (2+2).
  • Jack Eichel has seven points (4+3) in nine road games this season, including points in each of his last four (3+2).
  • Rasmus Ristolainen has 14 points (1+13) in 20 road games this season, including eight (1+7) in his last nine.
  • Sam Reinhart has six points (2+4) in his last six road games.

TOPPING TAMPA

  • The Sabres’ 28-15-3 (.641) record in Tampa Bay is the team’s best all-time road record against any Eastern Conference opponent. The team’s next best road record against an Eastern conference opponent is its 42-25-10 (.610) mark at Washington.
  • Buffalo’s all-time record of 52-32-7 (.610) against Tampa Bay is the team’s third-best record against any Eastern Conference opponent, trailing only their 87-48-20 (.626) mark against Washington and their 111-65-26 (.614) record against Toronto.

BACK-TO-BACK
Tonight’s game opens up Buffalo’s sixth of a league-high 19 sets of back-to-back games this season, which continues tomorrow night at Carolina. The Sabres are 2-1-2 in the first game of back-to-back sets and 2-2-1 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 (2), two points (0), one point (1) and zero points (1).

SOPHOMORE SURGE
In their second full NHL seasons, Jack Eichel and Sam Reinhart have each improved on their points per game totals from 2015-16.

2015-16

2016-17

Jack Eichel

Sam Reinhart

Jack Eichel

Sam Reinhart

G/GP

.30 (25)

.29 (24)

.42 (35)

.23 (18)

A/GP

.40 (33)

.24 (20)

.32 (26)

.45 (37)

P/GP

.69 (57)

.53 (43)

.74 (60)

.68 (55)

SOG/GP

2.9 (238)

2.1 (172)

3.7 (306)

2.2 (182)

(82-game pace in parentheses)

ASSIST-OLAINEN
Rasmus Ristolainen
entered play Wednesday tied for 15th among all NHL skaters with 24 assists.

  • Ristolainen has recorded an assist on 27.3 percent of his teammates’ goals*. Entering play Wednesday, it was the seventh-highest such percentage in the league.
  • This would rank as the fourth-highest percentage in franchise history. Only one Sabres defenseman has ever recorded an assist on more than 20 percent of his teammates’ goals: Phil Housley (22.6%) in 1989-90.
    • Ristolainen would need to fail to record an assist on each of his teammates’ next 19 goals to fall behind Housley’s pace.

*Teammate goals are defined as total team goals minus the player’s goals and shootout-winners.

SABRES AMONG LEAGUE-LEADERS (Sabres’ league rankings before Jan. 11 games)

  • Buffalo Sabres: 22.3% PP% (7th), 50.7% FO% (10th)
  • Eichel: 3.7 S/GP (4th)
  • Foligno: 119 hits (10th)
  • Moulson: 7 PPG (T-9th)
  • Nilsson: .945 EV SV% (2nd), .930 SV% (5th)
  • Okposo: 15 PPP (T-10th)
  • O’Reilly: 21:35 TOI/GP (3rd, forwards), 56.8 FO% (9th)
  • Ristolainen: 15 PPA (T-2nd), 26:52 TOI (5th), 16 PPP (T-6th), 24 A (5th, defensemen), 27 PTS (5th, defensemen)

LAST LINE OF DEFENSE
Buffalo’s goaltenders entered play Wednesday with the fifth-best combined save percentage* (.924) in the league. They also had the fifth-best save percentage during 5-on-5 play (.934).

  • 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).
  • They have topped the team’s current mark only four times in franchise history: 1998-99 (.930, Dominik Hasek/Dwayne Roloson/Martin Biron), 1997-98 (.928, Hasek/Steve Shields), 1996-97 (.926, Hasek/Shields/Andrei Trefilov) and 2009-10 (.924, Miller/Lalime/Enroth).

*Combined save percentage excludes empty net goals

BUF-TBL CONNECTIONS
Local Players:

  • Ryan Callahan was born in Rochester, New York and played for the Buffalo Lightning (OPJHL) during the 2001-02 season.

Josh Gorges:

  • Represented Canada alongside Braydon Coburn at the 2004 World Junior Championship.

Matt Moulson:

  • He and Brian Boyle were both members of the Los Angeles Kings from 2007-2009.

Anders Nilsson:

  • Represented Sweden with Victor Hedman at the 2010 World Championship.

Sam Reinhart:

  • Represented Canada alongside Jonathan Drouin at the 2014 World Junior Championship.

World Championships:

  • Kyle Okposo and J.T. Brown represented the United States at the 2012 World Championship.
  • Jake McCabe played with Tyler Johnson for the United States at the 2014 World Championship.

NHL Draft:

  • Zemgus Girgensons (14th overall) and Andrei Vasilevskiy (19th overall) were both first-round picks in the 2012 NHL Draft.
  • Rasmus Ristolainen (8th overall) and Jonathan Drouin (3rd overall) were both taken in the first round of the 2013 NHL Draft.

SABRES REAL-TIME STATS LEADERS
Hits:
Foligno (119), Ristolainen (111), Carrier (79)
Blocked Shots: Ristolainen (80), Gorges (62), McCabe (60)
Shots: Okposo (101), O’Reilly (90), Reinhart/Ristolainen (89)

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: 5-3-2 (12), 31/26, 8/30, 13/24
31-40: 4-4-2 (10), 27/31, 7/34, 21/28

OVERTIME RESULTS (2-4; 104-109 all-time)
Oct. 18 at CGY: L, 4-3 (GWG-Monahan)
Nov. 11 vs. NJD: L, 2-1 (GWG-Greene)
Dec. 5 at WSH: L, 3-2 (GWG-Johansson)
Dec. 6 vs. EDM: W, 4-3 (GWG-Ristolainen)
Dec. 16 vs. NYI: W, 3-2 (GWG-Ristolainen)

Jan. 5 at CHI: L, 4-3 (GWG-Kane)

SHOOTOUT RESULTS (1-5; 68-63 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)
Dec. 17 at CAR: L, 2-1 (GDG-Stempniak)
Dec. 20 at FLA: L, 4-3 (GDG-Trocheck)

MILESTONES APPROACHING (Player … Needs … Milestone)
Games Played

Zach Bogosian … 2 games … 500 NHL games
Cody Franson … 4 games … 500 NHL games
Justin Falk … 5 games … 200 NHL games
Matt Moulson … 5 games … 600 NHL games
Points
Kyle Okposo … 4 points … 400 NHL points
Cody Franson … 5 points … 200 NHL points
Rasmus Ristolainen … 8 points … 100 NHL points

RECENT MILESTONES
Jack Eichel … 100th NHL game … Jan. 10 vs. PHI

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