Game Preview: 2/8/18 vs. NY Islanders


Game Notes NHL Stats Press Clips

Tuesday, February 6
Anaheim 4 at Buffalo 3 (OT)
Goals: Girgensons, Eichel, O’Reilly
Goalie: Lehner (29 saves/33 shots)
PP: 1/2; PK: 2/3; Shots: Buffalo 33 – Anaheim 33

CURRENT INJURIES – (Man Games Lost: 188)
Player (injury, first game missed) – total games missed
Zach Bogosian (lower body, Jan. 11; injured reserve) – 10 games
Jake McCabe (upper body, Feb. 8) – 0 games

2/3: Activated D Nathan Beaulieu from IR; Assigned F Nicholas Baptiste to Rochester (AHL)

Saturday, Feb. 10: Buffalo at Boston, 7 p.m.
Sunday, Feb. 11: Colorado at Buffalo, 7 p.m.
Tuesday, Feb. 13: Tampa Bay at Buffalo, 7 p.m.
Thursday, Feb. 15: Buffalo at Ottawa, 7:30 p.m.
Saturday, Feb. 17: Los Angeles at Buffalo, 1 p.m.


  • This is the third and final meeting between the Sabres and Islanders this season.
  • Last meeting: New York defeated Buffalo 3-2 (OT) in New York on Dec. 27, 2017
  • The Sabres are 3-6-1 in their last 10 games vs. the Islanders; 4-5-1 at home.
  • This is the 168th game all-time between Buffalo and New York; Buffalo has an 80-63-24 series record.
  • The Sabres are 44-27-12 at home against the Islanders all-time.


  • The Sabres are 12-4-4 all-time on February 8.
  • February 8, 1974: The Buffalo Sabres earn the 100th win in franchise history, beating the California Golden Seals 7-2 in California.
  • February 8, 1984: Gilbert Perreault scores his 450th career goal with 3:16 left in the third period to seal a 6-5 road win over the Pittsburgh Penguins.
  • February 8, 2012: Ryan Miller stops 36 shots to earn his 25th career shutout in a 6-0 home win over the Boston Bruins.


  • Tonight’s game is the final in a five-game home stand and the fourth of nine home games in February.
  • Sabres goaltenders Robin Lehner and Chad Johnson have combined to stop 180 of the 188 shots (.957) they have faced at even strength in Buffalo’s last seven games.
  • These teams met three years ago on this date, with the Islanders earning a 3-2 victory in Buffalo. Only three Sabres who played in that game (Girgensons, Gorges, Ristolainen) remain on the team’s roster, though Chad Johnson dressed for New York.
  • Evander Kane enters tonight’s game with six points (3+3) in his last five games against the Islanders, including at least a point in each of his last three.


  • The Sabres have tallied at least one power-play goal in nine of their last 12 games dating back to Jan. 7 at Philadelphia (and went 0-for-0 on Jan. 11 vs. Columbus), converting at a 32.4 percent clip during that span.
  • Buffalo’s power-play percentage during this stretch led the league entering play Wednesday, and the team’s 12 power-play goals tied for the league lead.
  • During that stretch, the Sabres’ top power-play unit (Eichel, Okposo, O’Reilly, Reinhart, Ristolainen) has combined for 11 goals and each member of the unit has at least five power-play points.
  • Ryan O’Reilly entered play Wednesday tied for the league lead with four power-play goals since Jan. 7. Jack Eichel’s nine power-play points (2+7) during that stretch tied for second.
  • O’Reilly has taken 72.2 percent of the team’s power-play faceoffs during that span, going 42-for-57 (73.7%).
  • O’Reilly’s eight power-play goals this season ranked 10th in the league entering play Wednesday.


  • Robin Lehner has stopped 149 of 156 shots (.955) in his last five games.
  • Rasmus Ristolainen has 13 points (3+10) in his last 16 games, dating back to Dec. 29. Ristolainen’s 13 points during that span tied for fifth among NHL defensemen entering play Wednesday.
  • Kyle Okposo has recorded 12 points (3+9) in his last 11 games, including four multi-point games.
  • Ryan O’Reilly has recorded 11 points (6+5) in his last 12 games.
  • Sam Reinhart has totaled 10 points (3+7) in his last nine games.


  • Jack Eichel has recorded 18 points (11+7) in 17 home games dating back to Nov. 20 vs. CBJ.
  • Kyle Okposo has totaled 12 points (2+10) in his last 12 home games, including three multi-point home games in the month of January.
  • Ryan O’Reilly has 10 points (4+6) in nine home games dating back to the team’s game on Dec. 22 vs. Philadelphia.


  • Jack Eichel has totaled 32 points (14+18) in 28 games since the beginning of December.
  • During that stretch, Eichel ranked in the top 10 in the league in goals (T-6th, 14), points (T-8th, 32), even-strength goals (T-4th, 11), power-play points (12, T-9th) and shots (T-3rd, 113) entering play Wednesday.
  • Eichel scored at least two goals in four of those 28 games and entered play Wednesday tied for 11th in the league with four multi-goal games this season, just two off the league lead.


  • Jack Eichel is currently on pace to shatter his personal bests in goals (24), assists (33) and points (57) on the strength of improved production at even strength (T-8th in NHL in ES goals, T-15th in ES points entering play Wednesday).
  • Eichel’s 15 multi-point games this season are one shy of his career-best 16 in 2016-17.
  • With his 17th even-strength goal in his 44th game of the season on Jan. 11 vs. Columbus, Eichel surpassed his career-best total from 2015-16 (81 games). Through 53 games, Eichel now has 18 even-strength goals.
  • With his 36th even-strength point in his 53rd game of the season on Feb. 7 vs. Anaheim, Eichel surpassed his career-best total from 2015-16 (81 games).

Jack Eichel’s Production by Season

2015-16 81 24 32 56 16 19 35
2016-17 61 24 33 57 14 19 33
2017-18 53 21 30 51 18 18 36
2017-18 (Pace) 82 32 46 79 28 28 56


  • Of Jack Eichel’s 51 points so far this season, 23 have been goals or primary assists recorded during 5-on-5 play (excludes 6-on-5 situations).
  • Through 53 games, Eichel’s 23 primary points (12+11) during 5-on-5 play have already surpassed his 61-game total from last season (11+10) and are just one shy of his total from his 81-game rookie season (12+12).

*All primary point stats via

SABRES AMONG LEAGUE-LEADERS (Sabres’ league rankings entering play Wednesday)

  • Eichel: 18 EVG (T-8th), 194 S (6th)
  • Girgensons: 2 SHG (T-5th)
  • Kane: 3 SHG (T-2nd), 3 SHP (T-5th), 197 S (5th)
  • O’Reilly: 777 FOW (1st), 61.7% FO% (1st), 1,260 FO (2nd), 8 PPG (T-10th)
  • Ristolainen: 26:27 TOI/GP (3rd)

Former Sabres:

  • Jaroslav Halak was a member of the Sabres for six days during the 2013-14 season. He was acquired from the St. Louis Blues on Feb. 28 before being dealt to the Washington Capitals on March 5, and did not appear in a game during his brief stint in Buffalo.

Former Islanders:

  • Kyle Okposo was selected by New York in the first round (7th overall) of the 2006 NHL Draft. Okposo spent nine years in the Islanders organization and compiled 369 points (139+230) in 529 games.
  • Chad Johnson played for the Islanders during the 2014-15 season, appearing in 19 games and going 8-8-1 with a 3.08 goals-against average.

Davis Payne

  • Jaroslav Halak played in goal for the St. Louis Blues while Davis Payne was the head coach from 2010-2012.

Justin Falk:

  • Played for the Calgary Hitmen (WHL) during the 2004-05 season along with Andrew Ladd.
  • Was a member of the Minnesota Wild organization from 2009-2013 along with Cal Clutterbuck.

Josh Gorges:

  • Played with Jaroslav Halak for the Montreal Canadiens from 2006-2010.

Chad Johnson

  • Played with Dennis Seidenberg for the Boston Bruins during the 2013-14 season.

Evander Kane:

  • Played with Andrew Ladd for the Atlanta Thrashers/Winnipeg Jets from 2010-2015. The two also represented Canada at the 2011 and 2012 World Championships.

Johan Larsson:

  • Played with Thomas Greiss in the SHL for Brynäs IF during the 2010-11 season.
  • Played with Cal Clutterbuck for the Minnesota Wild during the 2012-13 season.

Jason Pominville:

  • Played with Cal Clutterbuck for the Minnesota Wild during the 2012-13 season.

Benoit Pouliot:

  • Played with Cal Clutterbuck for the Minnesota Wild from 2007-2011.
  • Played with Dennis Seidenberg for the Boston Bruins during the 2011-12 season.
  • Played with Jaroslav Halak in Montreal during the 2009-10 season.
  • Teammates with Jordan Eberle in Edmonton from 2014-2017.

Marco Scandella:

  • Played with Cal Clutterbuck for the Minnesota Wild from 2010-2013.

NHL Draft:

  • Jacob Josefson (20th overall), Evander Kane (4th overall), John Tavares (1st overall) and Nick Leddy (16th overall) were all taken in the first round of the 2009 NHL Draft.
  • Rasmus Ristolainen (8th overall) and Ryan Pulock (15th overall) were both taken in the first round of the 2013 NHL Draft
  • Jack Eichel (2nd overall), Anthony Beauviller (28th overall) and Mathew Barzal (16th overall) were all selected in the first round of the 2015 NHL Draft.

Hits: Ristolainen (124), McCabe (110), Kane (102)
Blocked Shots: McCabe (79), Scandella (77), Ristolainen (65)
Shots: Kane (197), Eichel (194), O’Reilly (139)

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: 2-6-2 (6), 18/31, 2/32, 24/32
31-40: 3-4-3 (9), 24/33, 3/25, 23/28
41-50: 4-6-0 (8), 27/31, 10/33, 15/26
51-60: 0-2-1 (1), 5/9, 2/6, 11/14

OVERTIME RESULTS (3-9; 111-120 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)
Dec. 8 at CHI: L, 3-2 (GWG-Forsling)
Dec. 10 at STL: L, 3-2 (GWG-Tarasenko)
Dec. 15 vs. CAR: L, 5-4 (GWG-Slavin)
Dec. 27 at NYI: L, 3-2 (GWG-Barzal)
Dec. 29 at NJD: W, 4-3 (GWG-Ristolainen)
Jan. 1 vs. NYR: L, 3-2 (GWG-Miller)
Jan. 22 at CGY: W, 2-1 (GWG-Eichel)
Feb. 6 vs. ANA: L, 4-3 (GWG-Henrique)

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

MILESTONES APPROACHING (Player … Needs … Milestone)
Buffalo Sabres … 1 home win … 1,000 regular-season home wins
Games Played
Jacob Josefson … 2 games … 300 career games played
Jack Eichel … 5 games … 200 career games played
Jack Eichel … 5 assists … 100 career assists
Ryan O’Reilly … 3 points … 400 career points
Zemgus Girgensons … 4 points … 100 career points

Benoit Pouliot … 600th NHL game … Feb. 7 vs. ANA

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