Game Preview: 12/8/17 at CHI

GAME-DAY RESOURCES

Game Notes NHL Stats Press Clips

LAST GAME
Tuesday, December 5
Buffalo 4 at Colorado 2
Goals: Pouliot, McCabe, Kane, Eichel
Goalie: Lehner (35 saves/37 shots)
PP: 0/3; PK: 4/6; Shots: Colorado 37 – Buffalo 35

CURRENT INJURIES – (Man Games Lost: 131)
Player (injury, first game missed) – total games missed
Taylor Fedun (lower body, Nov. 17; injured reserve) – 11 games
Jacob Josefson (ankle, Nov. 28; injured reserve) – 4 games
Nathan Beaulieu (illness, Dec. 5) – 1 game

TRANSACTIONS IN PAST 7 DAYS
12/2: Recalled F Hudson Fasching from Rochester (AHL)
12/4: Acquired F Scott Wilson from Detroit in exchange for a fifth-round pick in the 2019 NHL Draft; Recalled F Evan Rodrigues from Rochester (AHL); Assigned F Kyle Criscuolo to Rochester; Placed F Matt Moulson on waivers
12/5: Assigned F Matt Moulson to Ontario (AHL)

UPCOMING GAMES
Sunday, Dec. 10: Buffalo at St. Louis, 7 p.m.
Tuesday, Dec. 12: Ottawa at Buffalo, 7 p.m.
Thursday, Dec. 14: Buffalo at Philadelphia, 7 p.m.
Friday, Dec. 15: Carolina at Buffalo, 7 p.m.
Tuesday, Dec. 19: Boston at Buffalo, 7:30 p.m.

TONIGHT’S GAME
SABRES at BLACKHAWKS

  • This is the first of two meetings between the Sabres and Blackhawks this season.
  • Last meeting: Chicago defeated Buffalo 5-1 in Buffalo on Feb. 19
  • Next meeting: Saturday, March 17, 2018 in Buffalo
  • The Sabres are 0-8-2 in their last 10 games vs. the Blackhawks; 2-7-1 on the road.
  • This is the 120th game all-time between Buffalo and Chicago; Buffalo has a 53-51-15 series record.
  • The Sabres are 19-33-7 on the road against the Blackhawks all-time.

THIS DAY IN SABRES HISTORY

  • The Sabres are 9-5-4 all-time on December 8.
  • December 8, 1974: Gary Bromley needs just 14 saves in a 5-0 shutout victory against the Minnesota North Stars.

THINGS YOU SHOULD KNOW

  • Tonight’s game is Buffalo’s second of a three-game Western Conference trip that began with a 4-2 win at Colorado on Tuesday. The trip will conclude with a meeting with the St. Louis Blues on Sunday.
  • The Sabres are looking to snap an 11-game winless streak (0-9-2) against the Blackhawks that includes a seven-game winless streak (0-6-1) in Chicago.
  • Buffalo’s last win against the Blackhawks was a 2-1 victory at home on Dec. 11, 2009. Their last road win in Chicago came on Jan. 10, 2007.

HOT AGAINST CHICAGO

  • Jason Pominville has nine points (3+6) in his last nine games against Chicago.
  • Rasmus Ristolainen has five assists in his last five games against the Blackhawks.
  • Marco Scandella has an assist in each of his last four games against Chicago.
  • Ryan O’Reilly has four points (2+2) in four games against the Blackhawks since joining the Sabres.

WELCOME TO BUFFALO
On Monday, the Sabres acquired forward Scott Wilson from the Detroit Red Wings in exchange for Buffalo’s fifth-round pick in the 2019 NHL Draft. Wilson skated 14:19 in his Sabres debut on Tuesday at Colorado.

  • Wilson totaled 26 points (8+18) in his first full NHL season in 2016-17 and appeared in 20 playoff games with the Penguins in 2017, helping the team to its second consecutive Stanley Cup win.
  • Prior to joining Pittsburgh full-time for the 2016-17 season, Wilson totaled 77 points (41+36) in 90 regular-season AHL games with the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins. He led the league with 22 goals at the time of his last recall to Pittsburgh in February 2016.

RETURN OF E-ROD
The Sabres recalled Evan Rodrigues from Rochester on Monday. He logged 14:33 in his NHL season debut at Colorado on Tuesday.

  • Since returning from a hand injury that sidelined him for the first six weeks of the season, Rodrigues leads all Amerks skaters with 1.25 points per game (5+5 in eight games) this season, doubling his rate from the 2016-17 AHL season.
  • Rodrigues tallied six points (4+2) in 30 games with the Sabres last season.

THE KANE EVENT
Since the beginning of the 2016-17 season, Evander Kane has scored 41 goals in 98 games. Entering play Thursday, those 41 goals tied for 20th in the league during that span and his 34 even-strength goals tied for ninth.

SABRES AMONG LEAGUE-LEADERS (Sabres’ league rankings before 12/7 games)

  • Eichel: 2 SHP (T-4th)
  • Kane: 3 SHG (T-1st), 3 SHP (T-1st), 126 S (2nd)
  • O’Reilly: 424 FOW (1st), 61.2% FO% (1st), 693 FO (2nd), 2 SHP (T-4th)
  • Ristolainen: 27:00 TOI/GP (2nd)

BUF-CHI CONNECTIONS
Former Sabres:

  • Cody Franson played two seasons for the Sabres from 2015-2017, recording 36 points (7+29) in 127 games.

Former Blackhawks:

  • Andrew Allen served as the developmental goaltending coach in the Blackhawks’ organization from 2012-2015.
  • Phil Housley spent most of two seasons with the Blackhawks and tallied 68 points (41+47) in 137 games for Chicago from 2001-2003.

Local Players:

  • Patrick Kane was born and raised in Buffalo.

Jack Eichel:

  • Represented the United States alongside Ryan Hartman at the 2014 World Junior Championship.
  • Teammates with John Hayden and Nick Schmaltz for Team USA at the 2015 World Junior Championship.
  • He and Brandon Saad were teammates for Team North America at the 2016 World Cup of Hockey.

Hudson Fasching:

  • Represented the United States alongside Ryan Hartman at the 2014 World Junior Championship.
  • Teammates with John Hayden and Nick Schmaltz for Team USA at the 2015 World Junior Championship.

Josh Gorges:

  • Played with Duncan Keith during the 2002-03 season for the WHL’s Kelowna Rockets.
  • Represented Canada alongside Brent Seabrook at the 2004 World Junior Championship.

Chad Johnson:

  • Teammates with Artem Anisimov for the New York Rangers from 2009-2011.
  • Played with Lance Bouma for the Calgary Flames during the 2016-17 season.

Evander Kane:

  • Teammates with Lance Bouma for the Vancouver Giants (WHL) from 2006-2009.
  • Played with Duncan Keith for Team Canada at the 2012 World Championship.

Jake McCabe:

  • Represented the United States alongside Tommy Wingels at the 2014 World Championship

Kyle Okposo:

  • Represented the United States alongside Patrick Kane at the 2007 World Junior Championship.

Ryan O’Reilly:

  • Played with Duncan Keith for Team Canada at the 2012 World Championship.

Jason Pominville:

  • Represented the United States alongside Patrick Kane at the 2008 World Championship.

Benoit Pouliot:

  • Played with Richard Panik for the Tampa Bay Lightning during the 2012-13 season.
  • Teammates with Jordan Oesterle for the Edmonton Oilers from 2014-2017.

NHL Draft:

  • Kyle Okposo (7th overall) was taken four picks after Jonathan Toews (3rd overall) in the first round of the 2006 NHL Draft.
  • Ryan O’Reilly (33rd overall), Robin Lehner (46th overall) and Richard Panik (52nd overall) were all selected in the second round of the 2009 NHL Draft.
  • Nathan Beaulieu (17th overall) was taken three picks before Connor Murphy (20th overall) in the first round of the 2011 NHL Draft.
  • Rasmus Ristolainen (8th overall) and Ryan Hartman (30th overall) were both taken in the first round of the 2013 NHL Draft.
  • The first round of the 2014 NHL Draft saw both Sam Reinhart (2nd overall) and Nick Schmaltz (20th overall) go off the board.

SABRES REAL-TIME STATS LEADERS
Hits: Ristolainen (55), McCabe (52), Kane (52)
Blocked Shots: McCabe (44), Scandella (40), Ristolainen (32)
Shots: Kane (126), Eichel (89), O’Reilly (72)

SABRES’ RECORD IN 10 GAME SEGMENTS [W-L-OTL (PTS), GF/GA, PP, PK]
1-10: 3-5-2 (8), 26/36, 5/36, 29/35
11-20: 2-6-2 (6), 20/35, 5/28, 23/27
21-30: 2-6-0 (4), 14/25, 0/25, 18/25

OVERTIME RESULTS (1-3; 109-114 all-time)
Oct. 17 at VGK: L, 5-4 (GWG-Perron)
Oct. 21 at BOS: W, 5-4 (GWG-O’Reilly)
Nov. 11 at MTL: L, 2-1 (GWG-Pacioretty)
Nov. 14 at PIT: L, 5-4 (GWG-Sheary)

SHOOTOUT RESULTS (0-1; 69-65 all-time)
Oct. 5 vs. MTL: L, 3-2 (GDG-Drouin)

MILESTONES APPROACHING (Player … Needs … Milestone)
Wins
Buffalo Sabres … 4 home wins … 1,000 regular-season home wins
Games Played
Ryan O’Reilly … 2 games … 600 career games played
Sam Reinhart … 5 games … 200 career games played
Rasmus Ristolainen … 8 games … 300 career games played
Assists
Rasmus Ristolainen … 8 assists … 100 career assists
Points
Marco Scandella … 6 points … 100 career points

RECENT MILESTONES
Marco Scandella … 400th NHL game … Dec. 2 at PIT

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