Game Preview: 4/23/21 vs. Boston

GAME-DAY RESOURCES

Game Notes NHL Stats Press Clips

LAST GAME
Thursday, April 22
Boston 5 at Buffalo 1
Goals: Ruotsalainen
Goalie: Tokarski (33 saves/38 shots)
PP: 0/5; PK: 2/2; Shots: Boston 38 – Buffalo 30

CURRENT INJURIES – (Man Games Lost: 241)
Player (injury, first game missed) – total games missed
Zemgus Girgensons (hamstring, Jan. 14; injured reserve) – 47 games
Jake McCabe (knee, Feb. 22; injured reserve) – 33 games
Jack Eichel (neck, March 9; injured reserve) – 24 games
Carter Hutton (lower body, March 24) – 17 games
Linus Ullmark (lower body, April 15) – 5 games
Kyle Okposo (cheek, April 17) – 4 games

TRANSACTIONS IN PAST 7 DAYS
4/17: Recalled F Steven Fogarty from the Rochester Americans (AHL); Reassigned G Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen from Rochester to the taxi squad
4/18: Recalled D Mattias Samuelsson from the Rochester Americans (AHL); Reassigned F Steven Fogarty to the taxi squad; Reassigned F C.J. Smith to Rochester
4/20: Signed Lukas Rousek to a two-year, entry-level contract; Recalled G Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen from the taxi squad; Reassigned G Michael Houser to the taxi squad
4/22: Activated D William Borgen from IR

UPCOMING GAMES
Sunday, April 25: Buffalo at NY Rangers, 6 p.m.
Tuesday, April 27: Buffalo at NY Rangers, 7 p.m.
Thursday, April 29: Buffalo at Boston, 7 p.m.
Saturday, May 1: Buffalo at Boston, 1 p.m.
Monday, May 3: NY Islanders at Buffalo, 7 p.m.

TONIGHT’S GAME
BRUINS at SABRES

  • This is the sixth of eight meetings between the Sabres and Bruins this season.
  • Last meeting: Boston defeated Buffalo 5-2 in Buffalo April 22.
  • Next meeting: Thursday, April 29 in Boston
  • The Sabres are 0-8-2 in their last 10 games vs. the Bruins; 1-8-1 at home.
  • This is the 302nd game all-time between Buffalo and Boston; Buffalo has a 125-130-46 series record.
  • The Sabres are 74-54-24 at home against the Bruins all-time.

THIS DAY IN SABRES HISTORY

  • The Sabres are 2-0-0 all-time on April 23 (regular season).
  • April 23, 1995: Donald Audette (2+0), Pat LaFontaine (1+1) and Doug Bodger (0+3) all record multi-point outings in the Sabres’ 4-2 win against Philadelphia.
  • April 23, 1999: Miroslav Satan scores the game-tying goal in the third period before notching the game-winner in double overtime as Buffalo outlasts Ottawa 3-2 in Game 2 of the Eastern Conference Quarterfinals.
  • April 23, 2010: Ryan Miller turns away 34 of 35 shots to help the Sabres force Game 6 with a 4-1 win against the Bruins in the Eastern Conference Quarterfinals.
  • April 23, 2013: Thomas Vanek records three points (2+1) and reaches the 20-goal mark for the eighth consecutive season, despite a shortened NHL season, as the Sabres defeat the Penguins 4-2.

THINGS YOU SHOULD KNOW.

  • With their matchup on Tuesday, Boston became the first opponent the Sabres played in the regular season 300 times in franchise history. Buffalo’s 125 wins against Boston are the team’s second-highest total against any opponent (Montreal, 130).
  • The Sabres will meet the Bruins five times in seven games during a 12-day span from April 22 to May 1.
  • Following Thursday’s game, the Sabres were tied with Detroit and Pittsburgh for the NHL lead with 25 different goal-scorers this season.
  • Buffalo has not allowed a power-play goal in four consecutive games against the Bruins. The Sabres have killed 14 straight Boston power-plays dating back to the third period of their game on March 18.
  • Dustin Tokarski was named the NHL’s first star of the week for the week ending April 18.
    • Tokarski made a league-best 128 saves on 137 shots during the week, compiling a 2.27 goals-against average and .934 save percentage.
    • Tokarski ranks fourth in the NHL with 273 saves during the month of April.
  • Dylan Cozens has six assists in his last seven games. His six assists since April 11 leads all rookies and ties for sixth among all NHL skaters during that time span.
  • Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen is expected to make his NHL debut tonight. If he does, the Sabres will join the Ottawa Senators as the only NHL teams to have five goaltenders play for them this season.
  • Anders Bjork has recorded four points (1+3) in six games as a Sabre, including two assists in three games against his former team, the Boston Bruins.
  • Casey Mittelstadt has totaled ten points (7+3) in his last 13 games and leads all Sabres in both goals and points during that stretch.
  • Rasmus Dahlin has recorded eight points (2+6) in his last 11 contests dating back to April 3.
    • Following Thursday’s game, Dahlin’s six even-strength points and eight total points since April 3 tied him for seventh and sixth, respectively, among all NHL defensemen during that stretch.
  • Sam Reinhart has five points (4+1) in his last seven games. Reinhart is on pace to reach the 20-goal mark for the fourth consecutive season despite the shortened schedule.
  • Following Thursday’s game, the Sabres were the least-penalized team in the NHL with 6:16 of penalty time per game. Buffalo has been assessed 295 total penalty minutes this season, nine fewer than the closest team, the Chicago Blackhawks.

BACK-TO-BACK
Tonight’s game wraps up Buffalo’s 13th of 14 sets of back-to-back games this season, which began last night with a 5-1 loss against the Bruins. The Sabres are 3-10-0 in the first game of back-to-back sets and 2-9-1 in the second game so far this season. Buffalo’s point breakdown in previous back-to-back sets is: four points (0), three points (1), two points (4), one point (0) and zero points (7).

300 CLUB

  • Boston is the first opponent the Sabres have played 300 regular season games against in franchise history.
  • 397 skaters and 38 goaltenders have suited up for at least one contest against the Bruins.
  • The Sabres all-time leading goal scorer against the Bruins is Dave Andreychuk, who netted 39 goals in 79 games. His 18 power-play goals lead the team and 34 power-play points is tied with Gilbert Perreault for first.
  • Gilbert Perreault paces the team in career games (99), assists (64), and points (100) against the Bruins.
  • Nine Sabres players average a point per game or better against the Bruins (min. 10 GP)
    • Pat LaFontaine – 1.30, Daniel Briere – 26, Rene Robert – 1.20, Thomas Vanek – 1.14, Eddie Shack – 1.09, Richard Martin – 1.06, Alexander Mogilny – 1.03, Gilbert Perreault – 1.01 and Danny Gare – 1.00.
  • Ryan Miller started 42 career games for the Sabres against the Bruins and went 26-9-7. His 26 wins and 42 games played against the Bruins are first among Sabres goaltenders.
  • Among Sabres goalies to play in at least five games against Boston, Dominik Hasek leads with a .933 save percentage, a 2.02 goals-against average and three shutouts.

THREE IN A ROW

  • Today’s matchup is the third game of three straight against the Bruins. This series marks the second time the Sabres will play a team three straight times in the same regular season in franchise history.
  • The previous set of three straight games was on the road against the New York Islanders in March.
  • Buffalo has previously played the same opponent in three straight regular-season games on four occasions by wrapping up one season and beginning the next against the same team: Montreal (1987-88 and 1988-89), Quebec (1981-82 and 1982-83; 1991-92 and 1992-93) and Washington (2019-20 and 2020-21).
  • The Sabres have previously played the same team three times in a 10-day period just 15 times in franchise history. Before doing so against New Jersey in February, Buffalo had never played the same team three times in a seven-day span.

RISTO IN THE RECORD BOOK

  • With his goal on April 6 at New Jersey, Rasmus Ristolainen took sole possession of the eighth-most goals by a defenseman in Sabres history. He now trails Richard Smehlik by one goal 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 three 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 (14th), .37 A/GP (15th), .45 PTS/GP (12th) 

SABRES AMONG LEAGUE-LEADERS (Sabres’ league following Thursday’s game)

  • Ristolainen: 159 Hits (4th)

SABRES REAL-TIME STATS LEADERS
Hits: Ristolainen (159), Miller (86), Dahlin (64)
Blocked Shots: Ristolainen (55), Miller (50), Irwin (43)
Shots: Olofsson (108), Reinhart (98), Dahlin (95)

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: 0-9-1 (1), 18/45, 0/14, 18/26
31-40: 3-5-2 (8), 28/35, 3/23, 28/34
41-50: 3-3-1 (7), 19/19, 2/24, 13/15

OVERTIME RESULTS (0-4; 126-138 all-time)
Jan. 28 vs. NYR: L, 3-2 (GWG-Lafrenière, 2:47)
Feb. 25 vs. NJD: L, 4-3 (GWG-Zacha, 1:17)
March 29 vs. PHI: L 4-3 (GWG-Provorov, 0:42)
April 1 vs. NYR: L 3-2 (GWG Zibanejad, 4:32)

SHOOTOUT RESULTS (3-3; 80-74 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)
March 9 at PHI: L 5-4 (GDG-Couturier)
April 3 vs. NYR: W 3-2 (GDG-Thompson)
April 13 at BOS: L 3-2 (GDG-Coyle)

 

MILESTONES APPROACHING (Player … Needs … Milestone)
Games Played
N/A

Goals
Rasmus Ristolainen … 1 goal … 47 career goals (T-7th in franchise history, defensemen)

Assists
Rasmus Ristolainen … 5 assists … 200 career assists
Colin Miller … 8 assists … 100 career assists

Points
N/A

RECENT MILESTONES
Mattias Samuelsson … First NHL game … April 18 vs PIT

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