Game Preview: 3/9/21 at Philadelphia

GAME-DAY RESOURCES

Game Notes NHL Stats Press Clips

LAST GAME
Sunday, March 7
Buffalo 2 at NY Islanders 5
Goals: Skinner, Miller
Goalie: Johansson (25 saves/29 shots); 1 ENG
PP: 0/1; PK: 2/2; Shots: NY Islanders 30 – Buffalo 26

CURRENT INJURIES – (Man Games Lost: 79)
Player (injury, first game missed) – total games missed
Zemgus Girgensons (hamstring, Jan. 14; injured reserve) – 23 games
William Borgen (forearm, Feb. 22; injured reserve) – 9 games
Jake McCabe (knee, Feb. 22; injured reserve) – 9 games
Linus Ullmark (lower body, Feb. 27; injured reserve) – 6 games

TRANSACTIONS IN PAST 7 DAYS
3/2: Recalled D Jacob Bryson from the taxi squad; Loaned F Casey Mittelstadt to the taxi squad
3/7: Recalled D Brandon Davidson and F Casey Mittelstadt from the taxi squad; Loaned D Henri Jokiharju to the taxi squad
3/9: Recalled D Henri Jokiharju from the taxi squad; Loaned D Brandon Davidson to the taxi squad

UPCOMING GAMES
Thursday, March 11: Pittsburgh at Buffalo, 7 p.m.
Saturday, March 13: Pittsburgh at Buffalo, 7 p.m.
Monday, March 15: Washington at Buffalo, 7 p.m.
Tuesday, March 16: Buffalo at New Jersey, 7 p.m.
Thursday, March 18: Boston at Buffalo, 7 p.m.

TODAY’S GAME
SABRES at FLYERS

  • This is the fifth of eight meetings between the Sabres and Flyers this season.
  • Last meeting: Philadelphia defeated Buffalo 3-0 in Buffalo on Feb. 28
  • Next meeting: Monday, March 29 in Buffalo
  • The Sabres are 2-8-0 in their last 10 games vs. the Flyers; 2-7-1 on the road.
  • This is the 186th game all-time between Buffalo and Philadelphia; Buffalo has a 70-91-24 series record.
  • The Sabres are 26-55-14 on the road against the Flyers all-time.

THIS DATE IN SABRES HISTORY

  • The Sabres are 9-7-2 all-time on March 9.
  • March 9, 1973: Tim Horton scores his first goal as a member of the Sabres in a 5-2 loss at Vancouver.
  • March 9, 1980: Mike Ramsey makes his NHL debut, Rick Martin scores four goals and Gilbert Perreault notches five assists in a 9-4 win over St. Louis.
  • March 9, 1986: Gilbert Perreault scores the 500th goal of his NHL career, at the time becoming just the 12th player in NHL history to reach that mark.
  • March 9, 1988: Phil Housley scores two goals at Minnesota on his 24th birthday, including his 29th of the season, still the most in a season by any defenseman in Sabres history. (Housley’s career-high 31 goals in 1983-84 included seven scored while playing as a forward.)
  • March 9, 2006: Derek Roy scores his second career hat trick six days after scoring his first in an 8-5 win vs. Tampa Bay.
  • March 9, 2020: Kyle Okposo (800) and Sam Reinhart (400) reach career milestones in games played in the Sabres’ 3-2 shootout win over Washington.

THINGS YOU SHOULD KNOW

  • The Sabres have killed off 13 consecutive penalties and have not surrendered a power-play goal in six straight games. If the team remains perfect on the penalty kill today, it will be the first time the team has gone at least seven games without surrendering a power-play goal since Feb. 25 to March 12, 2012 (nine games).
    • Against the Flyers, the Sabres have killed off 12 consecutive penalties and have not allowed a power-play goal against in five straight meetings.
  • The team that has scored first has won all four of the games so far between the Sabres and Flyers this season.
  • Taylor Hall has 27 points (10+17) in 24 career contests against the Flyers, including seven points (2+5) in his last seven trips to Philadelphia.
  • Jack Eichel has 13 points (7+6) in his last 11 games against Philadelphia, including four multi-point efforts.
  • Eric Staal has 12 points (4+8) in 13 road meetings with the Flyers dating back to Feb. 2, 2013, including three multi-point games.
  • Riley Sheahan has six assists in his last seven games in Philadelphia, including four in his last four.

POWER UP

  • Entering play Monday, Buffalo ranked third in the NHL with a 29.7 percent conversion rate on the power play.
  • Entering play Monday, the Sabres were tied with the Carolina Hurricanes and trailed only the Chicago Blackhawks and Tampa Bay Lightning (11) for the NHL lead with 10 different players with at least one goal on the power play.
  • Victor Olofsson tied for fifth in the league with six power-play goals and tied for sixth with 12 power-play points before Monday’s games. His 19 career power-play tallies trail only David Pastrnak (23), Leon Draisaitl (21) and Auston Matthews (20) for the most in the league since he made his NHL debut on March 28, 2019.

OUT OF THE BOX

  • Entering play Monday, the Sabres were the least-penalized team in the NHL with 5:07 of penalty time per game.
  • At plus-14 (69 drawn/55 taken), the Sabres are second in the league (Colorado Avalanche, plus-16) in penalty differential this season.
  • Buffalo has been assessed 55 penalties this season. Entering play Monday, it marked the fewest in the league and was 13 penalties fewer than the next closest teams, the New Jersey Devils and the Vegas Golden Knights.

STAAL-TIME LEADERS

  • Eric Staal scored his 439th career goal on Jan. 30 vs. New Jersey to pass Gary Roberts and improve to 68th on the NHL’s all-time goal-scoring list. His next goal will tie Rick Tocchet for 67th.
  • Among active players, Staal’s total of 439 career regular-season goals trails only Alex Ovechkin, Patrick Marleau, and Sidney Crosby.
  • With 1,029 career points, Staal is currently tied with Alex Kovalev for 80th-most points in NHL history and trails Alexander Mogilny by three points for 79th.

WE LIKE EICH

  • Jack Eichel’s goal on Jan. 28 vs. NY Rangers moved him past Jochen Hecht for sole possession of the 19th-most goals in franchise history (139). He currently trails Drew Stafford by six goals for 18th.
  • Eichel’s career per-game output ranks in the franchise’s top 15 in every major scoring category (min. 82 GP): .37 G/GP (T-15th), .58 A/GP (10th), .95 PTS/GP (11th)

RISTO IN THE RECORD BOOK

  • With his goal on March. 4 at the NY Islanders, Rasmus Ristolainen moved into a tie with Tyler Myers and Jim Schoenfeld for the eighth-most goals by a defenseman in Sabres history. He now trails Richard Smehlik by two goals for seventh-most.
  • Ristolainen’s first assist on Jan. 24 at Washington moved him past Jim Schoenfeld for the seventh-most career points recorded by a Sabres defenseman. He currently trails Bill Hajt by nine points for sixth-most.
  • Ristolainen holds the franchise record for most overtime goals by a defenseman (4) and is tied for ninth all-time among the team’s blueliners with six game-winning goals.
  • Ristolainen’s career per-game output ranks him among the franchise’s top 15 defensemen in every major scoring category (min. 82 GP): .09 G/GP (12th), .37 A/GP (12th), .46 PTS/GP (11th)

BUF-PHI CONNECTIONS

  • Sabres forward Cody Eakin won a silver medal for Team Canada with Flyers forward Sean Couturier at the 2011 IIHF World Junior Championship. The duo would reunite, along with Sabres forward Taylor Hall, at the 2015 IIHF World Championship, winning a gold medal.
  • Sabres forward Jack Eichel, Flyers forward Sean Couturier and Flyers defenseman Shayne Gostisbehere played for Team North America at the 2016 World Cup of Hockey.
  • Sabres forward Jack Eichel and Flyers forward Kevin Hayes, both Boston natives, played for Team USA together at the 2017 IIHF World Championship.
  • Sabres forward Jack Eichel and Flyers forward James van Riemsdyk both played for Team USA at the 2019 IIHF World Championship.
  • Sabres forwards Taylor Hall and Cody Eakin won a gold medal with Claude Giroux while representing Canada at the 2015 IIHF World Championship.
  • A trio of Sabres forwards – Taylor Hall, Jeff Skinner and Eric Staal – played for Team Canada with Flyers forward Claude Giroux at the 2013 IIHF World Championship.
  • Sabres forwards Taylor Hall and Sam Reinhart won a gold medal for Team Canada with Flyers assistant coach Mike Yeo, who was one of the team’s assistant coaches, at the 2016 IIHF World Championship.
  • Sabres forwards Curtis Lazar and Sam Reinhart and Flyers forward Scott Laughton all played for Team Canada at the 2014 IIHF World Junior Championship.
  • Sabres forward Curtis Lazar and Flyers goaltender Brian Elliott both played for the Calgary Flames during the 2016-17 season.
  • Sabres forward Victor Olofsson played for Team Sweden at the 2015 IIHF World Junior Championship with Flyers forward Oskar Lindblom and Flyers defenseman Robert Hagg.
  • Sabres forward Sam Reinhart and defenseman Brandon Montour both played for Team Canada with Flyers forward Sean Couturier, Flyers defenseman Philippe Myers and Flyers goaltender Carter Hart at the 2019 IIHF World Championship, taking home a silver medal. Flyers Head Coach Alain Vigneault was the Canada’s head coach during the tournament.

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

  • Buffalo Sabres:7% PP% (3rd), 82.4 % PK% (9th), 51.9% FOW% (10th)
  • Olofsson: 12 PPP (T-6th), 6 PPG (T-5th)

SABRES REAL-TIME STATS LEADERS
Hits: Ristolainen (61), Miller (46), Lazar (45)
Blocked Shots: Montour (26), Miller (22), Irwin (19)
Shots: Eichel (61), Hall (60), Dahlin/Olofsson (51)

SABRES’ RECORD IN 10 GAME SEGMENTS [W-L-OTL (PTS), GF/GA, PP, PK] 1-10: 4-4-2 (10), 30/32, 12/39, 19/23
11-20: 2-7-1 (5), 16/28, 7/23, 18/23
21-30: 0-3-0 (0), 6/15, 0/2, 5/5

OVERTIME RESULTS (0-2; 126-136 all-time)
Jan. 28 vs. NYR: L, 3-2 (GWG-Lafrenière, 2:47)
Feb. 25 vs. NJD: L, 4-3 (GWG-Zacha, 1;17)

SHOOTOUT RESULTS (2-1; 79-72 all-time)
Jan. 22 at WSH: L, 4-3 (GDG-Carlson)
Jan. 24 at WSH: W, 4-3 (GDG-Eichel)
Jan. 30 vs. NJD: W, 4-3 (GDG-Eichel)

MILESTONES APPROACHING (Player … Needs … Milestone)
Goals
Rasmus Ristolainen … 2 goals … 47 career goals (T-7th in franchise history, defensemen)
Kyle Okposo … 4 goals … 200 career goals
Assists
Riley Sheahan … 1 assist … 100 career assists
Colin Miller … 10 assists … 100 career assists
Eric Staal … 10 assists … 600 career assists
Points
Brandon Montour … 5 points … 100 career points
Rasmus Dahlin … 6 points … 100 career points
Wins
Carter Hutton … 6 wins … 100 career wins

RECENT MILESTONES

Jacob Bryson … First career NHL goal … March 6 at NY Islanders
Rasmus Ristolainen … 45 career goals (T-8th in franchise history, defensemen) … March 4 at NY Islanders

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