Game Preview: 1/21/17 at MTL

GAME-DAY RESOURCES

Game Notes NHL Stats Press Clips

LAST GAME
Friday, January 20
Detroit 2 at Buffalo 3 (OT)
Goals: Reinhart, O’Reilly, Okposo
Goalie: Nilsson (32 saves/34 shots)
PP: 2/4; PK: 3/4; Shots: Buffalo 37 – Detroit 34

CURRENT INJURIES – (Man Games Lost: 224)
Player (injury, first game missed) – total games missed

Cody McCormick (blood clots, Oct. 13; injured reserve) – 45 games
Dmitry Kulikov (lower back, Dec. 29; injured reserve) – 11 games
Johan Larsson (wrist, Jan. 3; injured reserve) – 9 games
Josh Gorges (hip, Jan. 7) – 7 games

TRANSACTIONS IN PAST 7 DAYS
1/16:
Recalled F Cal O’Reilly from Rochester (AHL); Activated F Tyler Ennis from IR
1/19: Recalled G Linus Ullmark from Rochester (AHL)
1/20: Assigned G Linus Ullmark to Rochester (AHL)
1/21: Recalled D Casey Nelson from Rochester (AHL)

UPCOMING GAMES
Tuesday, Jan. 24:
Buffalo at Nashville, 8 p.m.
Thursday, Jan. 26: Buffalo at Dallas, 8:30 p.m.
Tuesday, Jan. 31: Buffalo at Montreal, 7:30 p.m.
Thursday, Feb. 2: NY Rangers at Buffalo, 7:30 p.m.
Saturday, Feb. 4: Ottawa at Buffalo, 7 p.m.

TONIGHT’S GAME
SABRES at CANADIENS

  • This is the second of four meetings between the Sabres and Canadiens this season.
  • Last meeting: Montreal defeated Buffalo 4-1 in Buffalo on Oct. 12, 2016
  • Next meeting: Tuesday, Jan. 31 in Montreal
  • The Sabres are 5-3-2 in their last 10 games vs. the Canadiens; 6-4-0 on the road
  • This is the 273rd game all-time between Buffalo and Montreal; Buffalo has a 124-109-39 series record.
  • The Sabres are 53-70-13 at home against the Canadiens all-time.

THIS DATE IN SABRES HISTORY

  • The Sabres are 6-9-4 all-time on January 21.
  • January 21, 1981: The Sabres earn the 400th win in franchise history with a 6-5 victory at Quebec.
  • January 21, 2011: Nathan Gerbe sets a franchise record, scoring two goals in a five-second span against the New York Islanders.

THINGS YOU SHOULD KNOW

  • The Sabres have gone 16-9-3 in their last 28 games against the Canadiens, including a 10-4-0 in 14 road games. The road team has won 12 of the last 17 matchups between these teams.
  • Kyle Okposo has six points (3+3) in his last six games against Montreal.
  • Cody Franson has four points (0+4) in his last four games against the Canadiens.
  • Ryan O’Reilly has 11 points (4+7) in 12 career games against Montreal.
  • Marcus Foligno has five points (4+1) in his last five games against the Canadiens.

ICE BREAKER
Rasmus Ristolainen
logged 35:24 of ice time last night vs. Detroit, topping his previous career high (30:22; Jan. 7, 2017 vs. Winnipeg) by more than five minutes. His total included all 4:34 of the overtime period.

  • The last NHL player to total at least 35:24 of ice time in a regular-season game was Erik Karlsson (36:34) on Dec. 20, 2015 at Tampa Bay.
  • Since the beginning of the 2009-10 season, only nine players have topped Ristolainen’s total in a regular-season game.
  • According to the Elias Sports Bureau, no Sabres player has topped Ristolainen’s total since the NHL began tracking ice time in the 1999-2000 season.

THE KANE EVENT
Evander Kane
has scored each of his 12 goals this season in his last 22 games, including a team-high 11 even-strength goals. In the period since scoring his first goal of the season on Dec. 3 vs. Boston:

  • He has not gone three consecutive games without scoring a goal.
  • He is tied for seventh among all NHL skaters in goals (12).
  • He is tied for the league lead in even-strength goals (11).

BACK-TO-BACK
Tonight’s game wraps up Buffalo’s eighth of a league-high 19 sets of back-to-back games this season after the team’s 3-2 overtime win last night vs. Detroit. The Sabres are 4-2-2 in the first game of back-to-back sets and 2-4-1 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 (2), two points (1), one point (1) and zero points (2).

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 (34)

.22 (18)

A/GP

.40 (33)

.24 (20)

.38 (31)

.42 (35)

P/GP

.69 (57)

.53 (43)

.79 (65)

.64 (53)

SOG/GP

2.9 (238)

2.1 (172)

4.2 (342)

2.2 (182)

(82-game pace in parentheses)

ASSIST-OLAINEN

  • Rasmus Ristolainen finished last night’s game tied for 24th among all NHL skaters with 25 assists.
  • Ristolainen has recorded an assist on 24.5 percent of his teammates’ goals*. 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 nine 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 after last night’s game)

  • Buffalo Sabres: 22.9% PP% (5th), 50.7% (10th)
  • Eichel: 4.2 S/GP (1st)
  • Foligno: 148 hits (6th)
  • Nilsson: .938 EV SV% (3rd), .925 SV% (7th)
  • Okposo: 17 PPP (T-8th)
  • O’Reilly: 21:33 TOI/GP (4th, forwards), 57.6 FO% (7th)
  • Ristolainen: 16 PPA (T-2nd), 26:54 TOI (5th), 17 PPP (T-8th), 25 A (T-6th, defensemen)

BUF-MTL CONNECTIONS
Former Sabres:

  • Paul Byron was drafted by the Sabres in the sixth round (179th overall) of the 2007 NHL Draft. With Buffalo, he appeared in eight games during the 2010-11 season and recorded two points (1+1).
  • Brian Flynn played in parts of three seasons for Buffalo, totaling 41 points (17+24) in 159 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.

Zach Bogosian:

  • Played with Zach Redmond for the Winnipeg Jets from 2012-2014.
  • 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.

Jack Eichel:

  • Represented the United States alongside Zach Redmond during the 2015 World Championship.

Cody Franson:

  • He and Shea Weber were both born in Sicamous, British Columbia.
  • Represented Canada alongside Carey Price at the 2007 World Junior Championship.

Evander Kane:

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

Jake McCabe:

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

Matt Moulson:

  • Played with Al Montoya for the New York Islanders from 2010-2012.

Kyle Okposo:

  • Played with Max Pacioretty and Jeff Petry for the United States at the 2012 World Championship.
  • Played with Al Montoya for the New York Islanders from 2010-2012.

Cal O’Reilly:

  • Teammates with Shea Weber for the Nashville Predators from 2008-2011.

Ryan O’Reilly:

  • Played with Zach Redmond for the Colorado Avalanche during the 2014-15 season.

NHL Draft:

  • Zemgus Girgensons (14th overall), Alex Galchenyuk (3rd overall) and Stefan Matteau (29th overall) were all first-round selections in the 2012 NHL Draft.

SABRES REAL-TIME STATS LEADERS
Hits:
Foligno (148), Ristolainen (119), Carrier (88)
Blocked Shots: Ristolainen (102), McCabe (64), Gorges (62)
Shots: Okposo (111), Kane (105), O’Reilly (105)

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
41-50: 2-3-0 (4), 14/16, 4/14, 11/15

OVERTIME RESULTS (3-4; 105-109 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)
Jan. 20 vs. DET: W, 3-2 (GWG-Okposo)

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

Nicolas Deslauriers … 9 games … 200 NHL games
Points
Kyle Okposo … 1 point … 400 NHL points
Cody Franson … 4 points … 200 NHL points
Rasmus Ristolainen … 7 points … 100 NHL points

RECENT MILESTONES
Cody Franson … 500th NHL game … Jan. 17 at TOR
Justin Falk … 200th NHL game … Jan. 20 vs. DET
Matt Moulson … 600th NHL game … Jan. 20 vs. DET

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