Game Preview: 1/30/19 at Dallas

GAME-DAY RESOURCES

Game Notes NHL Stats Press Clips

LAST GAME
Tuesday, January 29
Buffalo 5 at Columbus 4
Goals: Rodrigues, Reinhart, Thompson, Skinner, Sheary
Goalie: Hutton (33 saves/37 shots)
PP: 0/2; PK: 1/2; Shots: Columbus 37 – Buffalo 34

CURRENT INJURIES – (Man Games Lost: 174)
Player (injury, first game missed) – total games missed
Casey Nelson (upper body, Dec. 8; injured reserve) – 20 games

TRANSACTIONS IN PAST 7 DAYS
N/A

UPCOMING GAMES
Friday, Feb. 1: Chicago at Buffalo, 7 p.m.
Tuesday, Feb. 5: Minnesota at Buffalo, 7 p.m.
Thursday, Feb. 7: Carolina at Buffalo, 7 p.m.
Saturday, Feb. 9: Detroit at Buffalo, 1 p.m.
Sunday, Feb. 10: Winnipeg at Buffalo, 3 p.m.

TONIGHT’S GAME
SABRES at STARS

  • This is the first of two meetings between the Sabres and Stars this season.
  • Last meeting: Dallas defeated Buffalo 7-1 in Buffalo on Jan. 20, 2018
  • Next meeting: Tuesday, March 12 in Dallas
  • The Sabres are 2-8-0 in their last 10 games vs. the Stars; 2-8-0 on the road.
  • This is the 123rd game all-time between Buffalo and Dallas; Buffalo has a 56-49-17 series record.
  • The Sabres are 23-33-6 on the road against the Stars all-time.

THIS DATE IN SABRES HISTORY

  • The Sabres are 10-5-3 all-time on January 30.
  • January 30, 2007: Daniel Briere scores his second of two hat tricks as a member of the Sabres as the Sabres defeat the Bruins 7-1 in Buffalo.
  • January 30, 2008: Ryan Miller stops all 32 Florida shots and Thomas Vanek scores the lone Buffalo goal as the Sabres defeat the Panthers 1-0 in Florida.

THINGS YOU SHOULD KNOW

  • Tonight’s matchup is the Sabres’ fifth straight road game. After tonight, the team will return to Buffalo for a seven-game homestand that ties the stretch from Jan. 20 to Feb. 2, 1997 as the longest in franchise history.
  • Rasmus Ristolainen enters tonight’s game with points in four straight contests (0+4) for the second time this season. A point tonight would give him his first five-game point streak since January 2018.
  • The Sabres are looking to end a six-game road losing streak against the Stars, seeking their first win in Dallas since a 5-4 shootout win on Jan. 15, 2009.
    • The only player on tonight’s rosters who played in that game was Jason Pominville, who recorded two assists and the game-deciding shootout goal.
  • Nathan Beaulieu has totaled four points (1+3) in four career games against the Stars, including a career-high three points (1+2) on Jan. 4, 2017 in Dallas.

LIGHTING THE LAMP

  • Evan Rodrigues has scored in each of Buffalo’s last four games, marking the longest scoring streak of his career. He now has points in six of his last seven games (4+3), including points in five straight road games.
  • The streak ties him with Jeff Skinner (2x) and Sam Reinhart for the longest goal streak by a Sabre this season.
  • The last Sabre to record a goal in at least five consecutive contests was Thomas Vanek, who scored seven times during the first five games of the 2008-09 season (Oct. 10 to 18, 2008).

BACK-TO-BACK
Tonight’s game wraps up Buffalo’s 10th of 16 sets of back-to-back games this season, which began with a 5-4 win last night at Columbus. The Sabres are 5-4-1 in the first game of back-to-back sets and 5-2-2 in the second game so far this season. Buffalo’s point breakdown in their previous back-to-back sets is: four points (3), three points (1), two points (2), one point (2) and zero points (1).

DAH-LEAN ON ME

  • Rasmus Dahlin leads rookie defensemen and ranks second among all NHL rookies with 28 points this season. His 23 assists lead all NHL rookies in 2018-19.
  • With 28 points (5+23) through 49 games, Dahlin is scoring at a higher rate than he did in the Swedish Hockey League last season, when he totaled 20 points (7+13) in 41 games for Frölunda.
  • Dahlin’s current point total puts him on pace for 47 points this season. It would trail only Phil Housley (57 points in 1982-83) for the most ever recorded by a defenseman before his 19th birthday.
  • With six multi-point games so far this season, Dahlin has recorded more multi-point games as an 18-year-old than all but two defensemen in NHL history: Phil Housley (13) and Bobby Orr (8).

COMEBACK KIDS

  • The Sabres are 6-13-2 this season when trailing after two periods. Their six wins when trailing after 40 minutes tie for second-most in the league and their .286 win percentage in those games ties for fourth.
  • Buffalo’s six wins when trailing after two have already surpassed last season’s total and leave the team three third-period comebacks shy of the franchise record of nine set in the 2005-06 season.

SCORING WHEN IT COUNTS

  • Jeff Skinner’s seven game-winning goals are tied for second-most in the NHL this season. He is the first Sabres player with at least seven game-winners in a season since Derek Roy (9) in 2008-09 and is four shy of matching the single-season franchise record of 11 shared by Danny Gare (1979-80) and Alexander Mogilny (1992-93).
  • Skinner is also tied for third in the league with three overtime goals this season. Skinner’s total matches the Sabres’ single-season record shared by Daniel Briere (2006-07) and Derek Roy (2009-10) and ties him for 10th-most career overtime goals in franchise history.

SAM I AM

  • Sam Reinhart has already set career-high totals in assists (33) and multi-point games (13) this season. His 45 points leave him just five shy of his career high 50 from the 2017-18 season.
  • The Sabres are 19-8-4 this season when Reinhart records at least one point and 28-4-6 (.816) in his career when he records at least two.

LEADING THE WAY

  • All three of the Sabres’ top three scorers are currently on pace to shatter their personal bests in points on the strength of career-best production at even strength:
Player/Season GP G A PTS ES G ES A ES P
Eichel Career High (2017-18) 67 25 39 64 22 20 42
Eichel 2018-19 46 16 37 53 12 28 40
Eichel 2018-19 (Pace) 79 27 64 91 21 48 69
               
Skinner Career High (2016-17) 79 37 26 63 30 18 48
Skinner 2018-19 49 31 14 45 24 10 34
Skinner 2018-19 (Pace) 82 52 23 75 40 17 57
               
Reinhart Career High (2017-18) 82 25 25 50 13 16 29
Reinhart 2018-19 49 12 33 45 11 23 34
Reinhart 2018-19 (Pace) 82 20 55 75 18 38 57

MAKING HISTORY

  • If the Sabres’ top scorers continue their current pace, the team would have three 75-point players for the first time since 1992-93 (Pat LaFontaine, Alexander Mogilny, Dale Hawerchuk).
  • At his current pace, Jack Eichel would finish the season tied for the fourth-most even-strength points ever recorded by a Sabre, trailing only LaFontaine (83) and Mogilny (78) in 1992-93, and Gilbert Perreault in 1975-76 (70).
  • Eichel would trail only LaFontaine’s franchise-record 52 even-strength assists that season and would become the first Sabre to record at least 90 points since Daniel Briere in 2006-07 (95).
  • Jeff Skinner is currently on pace to become the seventh 50-goal scorer in Sabres history and the first since 1992-93 (Mogilny and LaFontaine). His 40 even-strength goals would finish behind only Mogilny’s even-strength total from 1992-93 (49), Rick Martin’s 44 in 1973-74 and Danny Gare’s 41 in 1975-76 for fourth-most in team history.

SABRES AMONG LEAGUE-LEADERS (Sabres’ league rankings)

  • Buffalo Sabres: 81.8% PK% (9th)
  • Eichel: 2 OTG (T-6th), 28 EVA (T-7th), 187 S (10th)
  • Ristolainen: 25:19 TOI/GP (7th)
  • Skinner: 31 G (2nd), 24 EVG (T-2nd), 7 GWG (T-2nd), 3 OTG (T-3rd)

BUF-DAL CONNECTIONS
Former Sabres:

  • Stars assistant coach Stu Barnes played for the Sabres for parts of five seasons (1998-2003). He recorded 172 points (67+105) in 310 games played and captained the team for two seasons (2001-2003).
  • Stars D Taylor Fedun spent parts of two seasons (2016-2018) with the Sabres organization, scoring eight points (0+8) in 34 games.

Former Stars:

  • Sabres General Manager Jason Botterill was drafted by the Stars in the first round (20th overall) of the 1994 NHL Draft and played in 21 games for the club. He later re-joined the team as a scout for the organization for the 2006-07 season.
  • Sabres F Remi Elie was drafted by the Stars in the second round (40th overall) of the 2013 NHL Draft. He played in 90 games for the team and scored 21 points (7+41).

Nathan Beaulieu:

  • Played with Stars F Alexander Radulov in Montreal.
  • Won a bronze medal for Team Canada with Stars D Jamie Oleksiak at the 2012 IIHF World Junior Championship.

Zach Bogosian:

  • Played in Atlanta when Stars assistant coach Todd Nelson was on the Thrashers’ coaching staff.

Jason Botterill:

  • Was the Penguins’ assistant general manager when Stars F Blake Comeau was playing in Pittsburgh.

Jack Eichel:

  • Played for Team USA with Stars D Connor Carrick at the 2014 IIHF World Junior Championship.

Matt Hunwick:

  • Played with Stars F Tyler Seguin in Boston.
  • Played with Stars D Jamie Oleksiak in Pittsburgh.
  • Played with Stars D Connor Carrick and D Roman Polak in Toronto.
  • Won a bronze medal for Team USA with Stars G Ben Bishop at the 2013 IIHF World Championship.

Johan Larsson:

  • Has played for Team Sweden with Stars D John Klingberg three times: at the 2011 and 2012 IIHF World Junior Championships and at the 2018 IIHF World Championship. The duo won gold medals together in both 2012 and 2018.

Kyle Okposo:

  • Played for the Islanders with Stars F Blake Comeau.
  • Played for Team USA with Stars G Ben Bishop at the 2010 IIHF World Championship.

Davis Payne:

  • Was an assistant coach for the Kings when Stars G Ben Bishop was playing in Los Angeles.
  • Was the head coach of the Blues when Stars G Ben Bishop and D Roman Polak were playing in St. Louis.

Rasmus Ristolainen:

  • Won a gold medal for Team Finland with Stars D Julius Honka at the 2014 IIHF World Junior Championship.
  • Has played for Team Finland with Stars D Esa Lindell twice: at the 2014 IIHF World Junior Championship and at the 2016 World Cup of Hockey. The pair won a goal medal together in 2014.

Marco Scandella:

  • Played with Stars G Anton Khudobin in Minnesota.

Conor Sheary:

  • Played with Stars D Jamie Oleksiak in Pittsburgh.

Jeff Skinner:

  • Played with Stars G Anton Khudobin in Carolina.
  • Played for Team Canada with Stars D Marc Methot at both the 2011 and 2012 IIHF World Championships.
  • Played for Team Canada with Stars F Jamie Benn at the 2012 IIHF World Championship.

Steve Smith:

  • Was an assistant coach for the Hurricanes when Stars G Anton Khudobin was playing in Carolina.
  • Was an assistant coach in Edmonton when Stars F Andrew Cogliano, F Tyler Pitlick and D Taylor Fedun were all playing for the Oilers.

Vladimir Sobotka:

  • Played with Stars G Ben Bishop and D Roman Polak in St. Louis.
  • Represented the Czech Republic with Stars F Radek Faksa at the 2016 World Cup of Hockey.
  • Has played for the Czech Republic National Team with Stars D Roman Polak three times: at the 2006 IIHF World Junior Championship, at the 2014 IIHF World Championship and at the 2016 World Cup of Hockey.

SABRES REAL-TIME STATS LEADERS
Hits: Ristolainen (149), Girgensons (77), McCabe (64)
Blocked Shots: Bogosian (78), Ristolainen (76), McCabe (73)
Shots: Eichel (187), Skinner (154), Ristolainen (120)

SABRES’ RECORD IN 10 GAME SEGMENTS [W-L-OTL (PTS), GF/GA, PP, PK]
1-10: 6-4-0 (12), 26/28, 8/38, 22/30
11-20: 6-2-2 (14), 35/27, 4/28, 26/29
21-30: 5-3-2 (12), 31/32, 5/28, 23/29
31-40: 4-4-2 (10), 24/27, 7/31, 27/29
41-50: 4-5-0 (8), 30/33, 1/24, 13/19

OVERTIME RESULTS (6-5; 119-126 all-time)
Oct. 27 at CBJ: L, 5-4 (GWG-Panarin, 0:31)
Oct. 30 vs. CGY: L, 2-1 (GWG-Gaudreau, 2:40)
Nov. 8 at MTL: W, 6-5 (GWG-Ristolainen, 1:38)
Nov. 19 at PIT: W, 5-4 (GWG-Eichel, 0:45)
Nov. 23 vs. MTL: W, 3-2 (GWG-Skinner, 3:06)
Nov. 27 vs. SJS: W, 3-2 (GWG-Skinner, 1:41)
Nov. 30 at FLA: L, 3-2 (GWG-Barkov, 2:26)
Dec. 4 vs. TOR: L, 4-3 (GWG-Matthews, 4:57)
Dec. 11 vs. LAK: W, 4-3 (GWG-Skinner, 1:49)
Dec. 29 vs. BOS: L, 3-2 (GWG-Kuraly, 3:44)
Jan. 16 at CGY: W, 4-3 (GWG-Eichel, 1:10)

SHOOTOUT RESULTS (3-1; 73-67 all-time)
Nov. 10 vs. VAN: W, 4-3 (GDG-Mittelstadt)
Nov. 16 at WPG: W, 2-1 (GDG-Sheary)
Nov. 24 at DET: W, 3-2 (GDG-Reinhart)
Dec. 15 at WSH: L, 4-3 (GDG-Ovechkin)

MILESTONES APPROACHING (Player … Needs … Milestone)
Games Played
Sam Reinhart … 2 games … 300 career games played
Zach Bogosian … 4 games … 600 career games played
Rasmus Ristolainen … 5 games … 400 career games played
Marco Scandella … 5 games … 500 career games played
Goals
Jason Pominville … 1 goal … 212 goals with Sabres (sole possession, 11th in franchise history)
Assists
Kyle Okposo … 4 assists … 300 career assists
Matt Hunwick … 8 assists … 100 career assists
Points
Jason Pominville … 1 point … 511 points with Sabres (T-8th in franchise history)

RECENT MILESTONES
N/A

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