Game Preview: 2/11/18 vs. Colorado

GAME-DAY RESOURCES

Game Notes NHL Stats Press Clips

LAST GAME
Saturday, February 10
Buffalo 4 at Boston 2
Goals: Kane, Wilson, Pouliot, Ristolainen
Goalie: Johnson (25 saves/27 shots)
PP: 0/1; PK: 4/4; Shots: Buffalo 28 – Boston 27

CURRENT INJURIES – (Man Games Lost: 193)
Player (injury, first game missed) – total games missed
Zach Bogosian (lower body, Jan. 11; injured reserve) – 12 games
Jake McCabe (thumb, Feb. 8) – 2 games
Zemgus Girgensons (illness, Feb. 10) – 1 game

TRANSACTIONS IN PAST 7 DAYS
2/11:
Recalled F Nicholas Baptiste from Rochester (AHL); Placed D Jack McCabe on IR

UPCOMING GAMES
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.
Monday, Feb. 19: Washington at Buffalo, 3 p.m.
Thursday, Feb. 22: Buffalo at Detroit, 7:30 p.m.

TONIGHT’S GAME
AVALANCHE at SABRES

  • This is the second of two meetings between the Sabres and Avalanche this season.
  • Last meeting: Buffalo defeated Colorado 4-2 in Colorado on Dec. 5, 2017
  • The Sabres are 3-6-1 in their last 10 games vs. the Avalanche; 4-4-2 at home.
  • This is the 143rd game all-time between Buffalo and Colorado; Buffalo has a 62-56-24 series record.
  • The Sabres are 38-21-11 at home against the Avalanche all-time.

THIS DATE IN SABRES HISTORY

  • The Sabres are 7-10-1 all-time on February 11.
  • February 11, 2006: Thomas Vanek scores on two of his seven shots as Sabres top the Florida Panthers 5-3 to improve to 7-0-1 in an eight-game span.
  • February 11, 2015: The Sabres acquire Evander Kane, Zach Bogosian and Jason Kasdorf from the Winnipeg Jets.

THINGS YOU SHOULD KNOW

  • Jack Eichel left last night’s game with an injury in the first period.
  • Sabres goaltenders Robin Lehner and Chad Johnson have combined to stop 224 of the 236 shots (.949) they have faced at even strength in Buffalo’s last nine games.
  • The Sabres have won their last two home meetings with the Avalanche and are looking to stretch the streak to three for the first time since the Sabres topped the Nordiques/Avalanche in three straight visits from March 28, 1995 to Nov. 14, 1996.
  • With a point tonight, the Sabres will have won the season series against Colorado for the first time since they won the lone matchup in 2005-06. The Sabres last swept a multi-game season series against the Avalanche six attempts ago, with wins in both meetings during the 1999-00 season.

HOT AGAINST COLORADO

  • Robin Lehner has started all five games against the Avalanche since he joined the Sabres, stopping 150 of 159 shots faced in those games (.943).
  • Jack Eichel (2+4) and Ryan O’Reilly (0+6) both have six points in five career games against the Avalanche.
  • Benoit Pouliot has nine points (4+5) in his last nine games against Colorado, including at least a point in each of the last four (3+2).
  • Rasmus Ristolainen has four points (1+3) and a plus-five rating in seven career games against the Avalanche.
  • Evander Kane has a goal in five of his last seven games against Colorado.

PLAYING WITH POWER

  • The Sabres have tallied at least one power-play goal in 10 of their last 14 games dating back to Jan. 7 at Philadelphia (and went 0-for-0 on Jan. 11 vs. Columbus), converting at a 32.5 percent clip during that span.
  • Buffalo’s power-play percentage during this stretch led the league after last night’s game, and the team’s 13 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 12 goals and each member of the unit has at least six power-play points.
  • Ryan O’Reilly led the league after last night’s game with five 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 74.1 percent of the team’s power-play faceoffs during that span, going 43-for-60 (71.7%).
  • O’Reilly’s nine power-play goals this season tied for fifth in the league after last night’s game.

WHO’S HOT?

  • Sam Reinhart has totaled 14 points (4+10) in his last 11 games.
  • Robin Lehner has stopped 175 of 185 shots (.946) in his last six games.
  • Rasmus Ristolainen has 15 points (4+11) in his last 18 games, dating back to Dec. 29. Ristolainen’s 15 points during that span ranked tied for fourth among NHL defensemen after last night’s game.
  • Kyle Okposo has recorded 13 points (3+10) in his last 13 games, including four multi-point games.

HOT AT HOME

  • Jack Eichel has recorded 20 points (12+8) in 18 home games dating back to Nov. 20 vs. CBJ.
  • Kyle Okposo has totaled 13 points (2+11) in his last 13 home games, including three multi-point home games in the month of January.
  • Ryan O’Reilly has 11 points (5+6) in 10 home games dating back to the team’s game on Dec. 22 vs. Philadelphia.
  • Sam Reinhart has totaled seven points (2+5) in his last six home games.

BACK-TO-BACK
Tonight’s game wraps up Buffalo’s 12th of 16 sets of back-to-back games this season, after a 4-2 win last night at Boston. The Sabres are 5-7-0 in the first game of back-to-back sets and 3-6-2 in the second game so far this season. Buffalo’s point breakdown in previous back-to-back sets is: four points (1), three points (0), two points (5), one point (2) and zero points (3).

JACK ATTACK

  • Jack Eichel has totaled 34 points (15+19) in 30 games since the beginning of December.
  • During that stretch, Eichel ranked in the top 10 in the league in goals (T-7th, 15), points (T-5th, 34), even-strength goals (T-4th, 12) and shots (3rd, 120) after last night’s game.
  • Eichel scored at least two goals in four of those 30 games and finished last night’s game tied for 13th in the league with four multi-goal games this season, just two off the league lead.

I LIKE EICH

  • Jack Eichel is currently on pace to surpass his personal bests in goals (24), assists (33) and points (57) on the strength of improved production at even strength (T-10th in NHL in ES goals, T-10th in ES points after last night’s game).
  • Eichel’s 16 multi-point games this season through 55 games have already tied his career best set 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 55 games, Eichel now has 19 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). Through 55 games, he now has 38 even-strength points.

SETTING THEM UP AND KNOCKING THEM DOWN

  • Of Jack Eichel’s 53 points so far this season, 24 have been goals or primary assists recorded during 5-on-5 play (excludes 6-on-5 situations).
  • Through 55 games, Eichel’s 24 primary points (13+11) during 5-on-5 play have already surpassed his 61-game total from last season (11+10) and tied his career-best total from his 81-game rookie season (12+12).

*All primary point stats via NaturalStatTrick.com

SABRES AMONG LEAGUE-LEADERS (Sabres’ league rankings after last night’s game)

  • Eichel: 201 S (6th), 38 EVP (T-10th), 19 EVG (T-10th)
  • Girgensons: 2 SHG (T-5th)
  • Kane: 3 SHG (T-2nd), 3 SHP (T-5th), 202 S (5th)
  • O’Reilly: 802 FOW (1st), 60.9% FO% (1st), 1,316 FO (2nd), 9 PPG (T-5th)
  • Ristolainen: 26:29 TOI/GP (3rd)

SABRES REAL-TIME STATS LEADERS
Hits: Ristolainen (135), McCabe (110), Kane (109)
Blocked Shots: Scandella (83), McCabe (79), Ristolainen (68)
Shots: Kane (202), Eichel (201), O’Reilly (141)

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: 2-6-2 (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: 2-2-1 (6), 13/14, 3/9, 17/21

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)
Games Played
Jack Eichel … 3 games … 200 career games played
Assists
Jack Eichel … 4 assists … 100 career assists
Points
Ryan O’Reilly … 2 points … 400 career points
Zemgus Girgensons … 4 points … 100 career points

RECENT MILESTONES
Benoit Pouliot … 600th NHL game … Feb. 6 vs. ANA
Buffalo Sabres … 1,000th regular-season home win … Feb. 8 vs. NYI
Jacob Josefson … 300th NHL game … Feb. 10 at BOS

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