Author Archives: Ian Ott

SABRES SIGN FORWARD ANDREW OGLEVIE

BUFFALO, N.Y. (April 11, 2018) — The Buffalo Sabres today announced the team has signed forward Andrew Oglevie to a two-year, entry-level contract.

As a junior at the University of Notre Dame in 2017-18, Oglevie (5’10”, 180 lbs., 2/16/1995) served as an alternate captain and ranked second among Fighting Irish skaters with 39 points (15+24), leading the team in goals for the second straight year. He finished his collegiate career by earning a spot on the NCAA All-Tournament Team after leading all skaters with seven points (3+4) in four games in the tournament.

A native of Fullerton, California, Oglevie totaled 89 points (41+48) in 107 regular-season games with Notre Dame. He was named as the team’s most improved player following a sophomore season in which he posted career-high totals in goals (21) and points (41).

2017-18 Season Recap

2017-18-Season Wrap-Up (PDF)

Top Team Notes:

  • The Sabres tied for sixth in the league with nine shorthanded goals in 2017-18, the team’s highest total since 2005-06 (10).
  • With consecutive wins in Calgary, Edmonton and Vancouver from Jan. 22 to 25, the Sabres swept a Western Canada road trip for the first time since March 1998.
  • Robin Lehner and Chad Johnson combined to keep the Sabres’ opponents scoreless for 199:19 during the team’s games from Jan. 22 to Jan. 30, marking the team’s longest shutout streak since the franchise-record 226:24 set from Jan. 16 to 25, 2003.
  • The Sabres finished the season with three 50-point players (Eichel/O’Reilly/Reinhart) for the first time since the 2011-12 season (Pominville/Vanek/Stafford).
  • Jack Eichel (21 years old) and Sam Reinhart (22 years old) became the first pair of 25-goal scorers under 23 years of age for the Sabres since Alexander Mogilny and Donald Audette each topped 25 as 22-year-olds in the 1991-92 season.

Top Player Notes:

Jack Eichel

  • Jack Eichel became the ninth unique player in franchise history to lead the team or tie for the team lead in goals, assists and points. He was the first to do so since 2012-13 (Thomas Vanek) and at 21 years of age, he was the youngest player to do so since Pierre Turgeon in 1989-90.
    • Four players have led (or tied to lead) the Sabres in all three categories twice in their careers: Gilbert Perreault (1976-77 and 1977-78), Pierre Turgeon (1988-89 and 1989-90), Miroslav Satan (2001-02 and 2002-03) and Thomas Vanek (2010-11 and 2012-13).
  • With his 25th goal of the season on March 29 vs. Detroit,  Eichel became the first Sabre aged 21 or younger to reach the 25-goal mark since Pierre Turgeon did so in the 1990-91 season.
  • Eichel became just the fourth player in franchise history to score 20 or more goals in each of his first three NHL seasons, joining Gilbert Perreault, Rick Martin and Thomas Vanek.
  • Eichel joined Gilbert Perreault, Rick Martin, Phil Housley and Christian Ruuttu as the only Sabres to record at least 50 points in each of their first three NHL seasons.
  • Eichel set a new career high with .96 points per game this season. It was the team’s highest points-per-game mark among players with at least 10 games played since Thomas Vanek logged 1.08 points per game in 38 games in 2012-13.
    • His .58 assist per game game ranked as the team’s best rate (min. 10 games) since Derek Roy had .71 assists per game in 35 games in 2010-11.
  • Eichel finished the season ranked ninth in the league with 1.09 points per game on the road (38 points in 35 games). It was the highest road scoring rate by a Sabre since Thomas Vanek recorded 23 points in 20 road games (1.15) in 2012-13 and the highest in a full season since Daniel Briere recorded 48 points in 39 road games (1.23) in 2006-07.
  • Of Eichel’s 64 points this season, 27 were goals or primary assists recorded during 5-on-5 play (excludes 6-on-5 situations). This topped his previous career-best total from his 81-game rookie season (24) by three in 14 fewer games.
  • Eichel’s five assists on March 31 at Nashville tied the Sabres’ franchise record for most assists in a game. Eichel joined Gilbert Perreault (3x), Pat LaFontaine (3x) and Dale Hawerchuk as the only players in Sabres history to accomplish this feat.
  • Despite missing 15 games with a high-ankle sprain, Eichel has topped his previous personal bests in goals (24), assists (33) and points (57) on the strength of improved production at even strength.

Jack Eichel’s Production by Season

Season

GP

G

A

PTS

ES G

ES A

ES P

2015-16

81

24

32

56

16

19

35

2016-17

61

24

33

57

14

19

33

2017-18

67

25

39

64

22

20

42

Robin Lehner

  • Robin Lehner logged a career-best three shutouts this season, bringing his career total to eight. Lehner’s six shutouts as a member of the Sabres rank him eighth in franchise history.

Ryan O’Reilly

  • Ryan O’Reilly led the league and set a career high with a faceoff win percentage of 60.0 percent. It was the best season by a Sabres center since the league began publishing faceoff percentage in 1997-98:
    • Ryan O’Reilly – 60.0% (2017-18)
    • Paul Gaustad – 59.8% (2010-11)
    • Chris Gratton – 58.9% (2002-03)
    • Chris Drury – 58.8% (2006-07)
    • Ryan O’Reilly – 58.0% (2016-17)
  • O’Reilly also led the NHL in faceoffs won, edging Rod Brind’Amour (1,268 in 2005-06) to set an NHL record for the most by any NHL player in a season. His 954 wins at even strength shattered the previous single-season record (Brind’Amour, 870 in 2001-02).
    • His 29 faceoff wins on Feb. 11 vs. Colorado set a single-game franchise record and tied as the sixth most wins by a player since the league began tracking faceoff stats in the 1997-98 season.
  • O’Reilly  became just the third player ever to win at least 1,000 faceoffs in a season while maintaining a faceoff percentage of at least 59 percent, joining Brind’Amour (five times) and Patrice Bergeron (two times).

Jason Pominville

  • Pominville moved up the franchise’s all-time leaderboard to rank 12th in regular-season games played (660), eighth in assists (289) and 11th in points (490).

Sam Reinhart

  • Sam Reinhart totaled 37 points (18+19) in his last 38 games of the season. His has 20 goals in 43 games in 2018 tied him for 12th-most in the league from Jan. 1 onward.

Rasmus Ristolainen

  • At 26:29, Rasmus Ristolainen averaged the most ice time per game of his career, edging last year’s total by six seconds per game. It was the highest average ice time by a Sabres skater in a full season with the team since Alexei Zhitnik (26:33) in 2002-03.

Marco Scandella

  • Marco Scandella recorded 17 assists this season, topping his previous career high (16) set in the 2015-16 season. He finished one point shy of his career-best 23 points.

End-Of-Season Press Conferences
General Manager Jason Botterill
Head Coach Phil Housley

Locker Room Clean-Out Interviews
Victor Antipin
Zach Bogosian

Jack Eichel

Josh Gorges
Chad Johnson
Jake McCabe

Casey Mittelstadt
Kyle Okposo
Ryan O’Reilly

Jason Pominville
Sam Reinhart
Rasmus Ristolainen
Evan Rodrigues
Scott Wilson

SABRES AMONG LEAGUE-LEADERS (Sabres ranked in the top 10)

  • Eichel: 3.67 S/GP (7th)
  • O’Reilly: 1,274 FOW (1st), 60.0% FO% (1st), 2,124 FO (1st), 15 PPG (T-3rd), 4 SHP (T-6th)
  • Ristolainen: 26:29 TOI/GP (4th)

SABRES’ RECORD IN 10 GAME SEGMENTS
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: 3-6-1 (7), 28/32, 6/24, 32/38
61-70: 5-4-1 (11), 24/31, 6/32, 20/25
71-80: 3-7-0 (6), 24/40, 9/36, 16/24
81-82: 0-2-0 (0), 8/11, 3/8, 5/6

OVERTIME RESULTS (5-10; 113-121 all-time)
Oct. 17 at VGK: L, 5-4 (GWG-Perron, 3:52)
Oct. 21 at BOS: W, 5-4 (GWG-O’Reilly, 2:59)
Nov. 11 at MTL: L, 2-1 (GWG-Pacioretty, 3:08)
Nov. 14 at PIT: L, 5-4 (GWG-Sheary, 0:16)
Dec. 8 at CHI: L, 3-2 (GWG-Forsling, 4:55)
Dec. 10 at STL: L, 3-2 (GWG-Tarasenko, 4:24)
Dec. 15 vs. CAR: L, 5-4 (GWG-Slavin,2:15)
Dec. 27 at NYI: L, 3-2 (GWG-Barzal, 1:08)
Dec. 29 at NJD: W, 4-3 (GWG-Ristolainen, 2:37)
Jan. 1 vs. NYR: L, 3-2 (GWG-Miller, 2:43)
Jan. 22 at CGY: W, 2-1 (GWG-Eichel, 1:30)
Feb. 6 vs. ANA: L, 4-3 (GWG-Henrique, 1:36)
Feb. 15 at OTT: L, 3-2 (GWG-Hoffman,1:13)
Feb. 22 at DET: W, 3-2 (GWG-Scandella, 4:59)
Feb. 28 at TBL: W, 2-1 (GWG-Pominville, 1:26)

SHOOTOUT RESULTS (1-2; 70-66 all-time)
Oct. 5 vs. MTL: L, 3-2 (GDG-Drouin)
March 8 at OTT: W, 4-3 (GDG-Josefson)
March 10 vs. VGK: L, 2-1 (GDG-Haula)

SABRES ASSIGN EIGHT TO ROCHESTER

BUFFALO, N.Y. (April 8, 2018) — The Buffalo Sabres today announced the team has assigned eight players to the Rochester Americans (AHL): Forwards Nicholas Baptiste, Alexander Nylander and Kevin Porter; defensemen Brendan Guhle, Casey Nelson and Matt Tennyson; goaltenders Linus Ullmark and Adam Wilcox.

Game Preview: 4/7/18 at Florida

GAME-DAY RESOURCES

Game Notes NHL Stats Press Clips

LAST GAME
Friday, April 6
Buffalo 5 at Tampa Bay 7
Goals: Mittelstadt, Nylander, Pominville, Nolan, Okposo
Goalie: Johnson (27 saves/33 shots); 1 ENG
PP: 2/5; PK: 3/3; Shots: Tampa Bay 34 – Buffalo 32

CURRENT INJURIES – (Man Games Lost: 321)
Player (injury, first game missed) – total games missed
Zach Bogosian (lower body, Jan. 11; injured reserve) – 38 games
Jake McCabe (shoulder, Feb. 8; injured reserve) – 28 games
Jacob Josefson (lower body. March 17) – 11 games
Linus Ullmark (upper body, March 26) – 6 games
Robin Lehner (lower body, March 31) – 4 games
Victor Antipin (concussion, April 2) – 3 games
Zemgus Girgensons (face, April 4) – 2 games

TRANSACTIONS IN PAST 7 DAYS
4/2: Recalled D Matt Tennyson from Rochester (AHL)
4/3: Recalled F Alexander Nylander and F Kevin Porter from Rochester (AHL)

TONIGHT’S GAME
SABRES at PANTHERS

  • This is the fourth and final meeting between the Sabres and Panthers this season.
  • Last meeting: Florida defeated Buffalo 4-1 in Florida on March 2
  • The Sabres are 3-6-1 in their last 10 games vs. the Panthers; 2-6-2 on the road.
  • This is the 96th game all-time between Buffalo and Florida; Buffalo has a 48-39-8 series record.
  • The Sabres are 21-21-4 on the road against the Panthers all-time.

THIS DATE IN SABRES HISTORY

  • The Sabres are 4-4-2 all-time (regular season) on April 7.
  • April 7, 1974: Rick Martin becomes first Sabre to score at least 50 goals in a season with a hat trick that pushed his total to 52 in the final game of the season, a 5-2 win vs. St. Louis.
  • April 7, 2007: The Sabres clinch the first Presidents’ Trophy in franchise history with a 2-0 win at Washington, breaking the record set one year prior with their 53rd win.

THINGS YOU SHOULD KNOW

  • The Sabres are 23-16-7 all-time in the final game of the regular season, including a 6-4-2 record since 2005-06.
  • With losses in their last four games against Florida, the Sabres need a win tonight to avoid matching the team’s longest winless streak against the Panthers (0-4-1 from Jan. 9 to Dec. 6, 2014). The Sabres have never lost five straight matchups with the Panthers in regulation.
  • The Sabres are seeking their first road win against the Panthers since Nov. 12, 2015.
  • Sam Reinhart has totaled 36 points (17+19) in his last 37 games dating back to Jan. 18. Reinhart has 19 goals in 42 games so far in 2018, tying him for 13th-most in the league since Jan. 1 after last night’s game.

TAMING THE CATS

  • Jason Pominville has totaled 38 points (15+23) in 41 career games against Florida, including nine points (4+5) in his last 10 meetings.
  • Ryan O’Reilly has 17 points (7+10) in his last 17 games against the Panthers, including points in 13 of those contests and four two-point games.
  • Sam Reinhart has 10 points (6+4) in his last 10 games against the Panthers.

WHO’S HOT?

  • Jack Eichel has recorded nine points (3+6) in his last six games and has played at a point-per-game pace dating back to mid-November, with 49 points (21+28) in his last 49 games.
  • Ryan O’Reilly has posted eight points (3+5) in his last seven games, including each of his last five.
  • Sam Reinhart (4+2) and Rasmus Ristolainen (0+6) each have six points in their last five games.
  • Kyle Okposo has scored four goals in his last four games.

BACK-TO-BACK
Tonight’s game wraps up Buffalo’s final of 16 sets of back-to-back games this season, which began with a 7-5 loss last night at Tampa Bay. The Sabres are 5-11-0 in the first game of back-to-back sets and 5-8-2 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 (8), one point (2) and zero points (4).

ROAD WARRIORS

  • The Sabres enter tonight’s game with a 9-5-1 record in their last 15 road games.
  • Jack Eichel has 37 points (11+26) in 34 road games this season. Eichel’s 1.09 points per game on the road this season ranked as the ninth-best rate in the NHL after last night’s game.
  • Sam Reinhart has totaled 17 points (10+7) in his last 16 road games.
  • Rasmus Ristolainen has recorded 18 points (4+14) in his last 20 road games.
  • Ryan O’Reilly has nine points (1+8) in his last eight road games.
  • Kyle Okposo has five points (3+2) his last five road games.
  • Jason Pominville has recorded a point in each of his last four road games (3+1).

QUARTER CENTURY KIDS

  • With his 25th goal of the season on March 29 vs. Detroit, Jack Eichel became the first Sabre aged 21 or younger to reach the 25-goal mark since Pierre Turgeon did so in the 1990-91 season.
  • Sam Reinhart (22 years old) is one goal shy of the 25-goal mark. If he scores another goal this season, the Sabres would have two 25-goal scorers under 23 years of age for the first time since Alexander Mogilny and Donald Audette each topped 25 as 22-year-olds in the 1991-92 season.

DRAWING ATTENTION*

  • Ryan O’Reilly, who leads the NHL in faceoffs won (1,255) and faceoff percentage (60.0%) this season, is climbing the single-season record books as well. His 1,255 wins through 80 games played rank second in NHL history; he needs 14 wins tonight to edge Rod Brind’Amour (1,268 in 2005-06) for the most by any NHL player in a season.
  • O’Reilly will become just the third player ever to win at least 1,000 faceoffs in a season while maintaining a faceoff percentage of at least 59 percent, joining Brind’Amour (five times) and Patrice Bergeron (two times).

*The NHL began keeping faceoff stats in the 1997-98 season.

I LIKE EICH

  • Despite missing 15 games with a high-ankle sprain, Jack Eichel has topped his previous personal bests in goals (24), assists (33) and points (57) on the strength of improved production at even strength.
  • With his 17th multi-point game in his 61st game of the season, Eichel surpassed his career-best total of 16 set in 2016-17. Through 66 games, Eichel now has 18 multi-point games.
  • 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).
  • 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

Season GP G A PTS ES G ES A ES P
2015-16 81 24 32 56 16 19 35
2016-17 61 24 33 57 14 19 33
2017-18 66 25 38 63 22 20 42

SETTING THEM UP AND KNOCKING THEM DOWN

  • Of Jack Eichel’s 63 points so far this season, 27 have been goals or primary assists recorded during 5-on-5 play (excludes 6-on-5 situations).
  • Through 66 games played, Eichel’s 27 primary points (16+11) during 5-on-5 play have surpassed 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: 3.67 S/GP (7th)
  • O’Reilly: 1,255 FOW (1st), 60.0% FO% (1st), 2,091 FO (1st), 14 PPG (T-5th), 4 SHP (T-6th)
  • Ristolainen: 26:31 TOI/GP (4th)

BUF-FLA CONNECTIONS
Former Sabres:

  • Jamie McGinn recorded 27 points (14+13) in 63 games for the Sabres during the 2015-16 season.
  • Mark Pysyk was taken by the Sabres in the first round (23rd overall) of the 2010 NHL Draft. In 125 games over four seasons, Pysyk recorded 26 points (5+21).

Nathan Beaulieu:

  • Represented Canada alongside Mark Pysyk at the 2012 World Junior Championship.

Jack Eichel:

  • Represented the United States alongside Ian McCoshen at the 2014 and 2015 World Junior Championships.
  • Was named to Team North America for the 2016 World Cup of Hockey along with Aaron Ekblad and Vincent Trochek.

Chad Johnson:

  • Johnson, and Radim Vrbata and Keith Yandle were teammates for the Phoenix Coyotes during the 2012-13 season.

Kyle Okposo:

  • Represented the United States alongside Keith Yandle at the 2010 World Championship.
  • Teammates with Michael Haley for the New York Islanders from 2009-2012.

Ryan O’Reilly:

  • He and Aaron Ekblad share a birth date. O’Reilly was born on Feb. 7, 1991, and Ekblad was born on Feb. 7, 1996. The two also played together for Team Canada at the 2015 World Championship.
  • Teammates with Jamie McGinn for the Colorado Avalanche from 2011-2015.
  • Played alongside Michael Matheson for Team Canada at the 2016 World Championship.

Sam Reinhart:

  • Played alongside Michael Matheson for Team Canada at the 2016 World Championship.

Rasmus Ristolainen:

  • Represented Finland alongside Aleksander Barkov at the 2012 World U18 Championship and the 2016 World Cup of Hockey.

Matt Tennyson:

  • Played with Michael Haley for the San Jose Sharks from 2014-2016. James Reimer was also on the team for part of the 2015-16 campaign.

NHL Draft:

  • Justin Falk (110th overall) was taken two picks before Colton Sceviour (112th overall) in the fourth round of the 2007 NHL Draft.
  • Johan Larsson (56th overall by Minnesota), Alex Petrovic (36th overall) and Connor Brickley (50th overall) were all drafted in the second round of the 2010 NHL Draft.
  • Nathan Beaulieu (17th overall) and Jonathan Huberdeau (3rd overall) were both taken in the first round of the 2011 NHL Draft. They were also teammates for the Saint John Sea Dogs (QMJHL) from 2009-2012 and for Team Canada at the 2012 World Junior Championship.
  • Rasmus Ristolainen (8th overall) and Alexander Barkov (2nd overall) were both selected in the first round of the 2013 NHL Draft.
  • Sam Reinhart (2nd overall) and Aaron Ekblad (1st overall) were the top two picks in the 2014 NHL Draft. Jared McCann (24th overall) was also taken in the first round in 2014.

SABRES REAL-TIME STATS LEADERS
Hits: Ristolainen (206), Girgensons (134), Nolan (123)
Blocked Shots: Scandella (113), Ristolainen (109), McCabe (79)
Shots: Eichel (242), O’Reilly (226), Reinhart (184)

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: 3-6-1 (7), 28/32, 6/24, 32/38
61-70: 5-4-1 (11), 24/31, 6/32, 20/25
71-80: 3-7-0 (6), 24/40, 9/36, 16/24
81-82: 0-1-0 (0), 5/7, 2/5, 3/3

OVERTIME RESULTS (5-10; 113-121 all-time)
Oct. 17 at VGK: L, 5-4 (GWG-Perron, 3:52)
Oct. 21 at BOS: W, 5-4 (GWG-O’Reilly, 2:59)
Nov. 11 at MTL: L, 2-1 (GWG-Pacioretty, 3:08)
Nov. 14 at PIT: L, 5-4 (GWG-Sheary, 0:16)
Dec. 8 at CHI: L, 3-2 (GWG-Forsling, 4:55)
Dec. 10 at STL: L, 3-2 (GWG-Tarasenko, 4:24)
Dec. 15 vs. CAR: L, 5-4 (GWG-Slavin,2:15)
Dec. 27 at NYI: L, 3-2 (GWG-Barzal, 1:08)
Dec. 29 at NJD: W, 4-3 (GWG-Ristolainen, 2:37)
Jan. 1 vs. NYR: L, 3-2 (GWG-Miller, 2:43)
Jan. 22 at CGY: W, 2-1 (GWG-Eichel, 1:30)
Feb. 6 vs. ANA: L, 4-3 (GWG-Henrique, 1:36)
Feb. 15 at OTT: L, 3-2 (GWG-Hoffman,1:13)
Feb. 22 at DET: W, 3-2 (GWG-Scandella, 4:59)
Feb. 28 at TBL: W, 2-1 (GWG-Pominville, 1:26)

SHOOTOUT RESULTS (1-2; 70-66 all-time)
Oct. 5 vs. MTL: L, 3-2 (GDG-Drouin)
March 8 at OTT: W, 4-3 (GDG-Josefson)
March 10 vs. VGK: L, 2-1 (GDG-Haula)

RECENT MILESTONES
Casey Mittelstadt … 1st NHL goal … April 6 at Tampa Bay
Alexander Nylander … 1st NHL goal … April 6 at Tampa Bay

Game Preview: 4/6/18 at Tampa Bay

GAME-DAY RESOURCES

Game Notes NHL Stats Press Clips

LAST GAME
Wednesday, April 4
Ottawa 4 at Buffalo 2
Goals: O’Reilly, Okposo
Goalie: Johnson (28 saves/31 shots)
PP: 0/3; PK: 1/1; Shots: Buffalo 34 – Ottawa 32

CURRENT INJURIES – (Man Games Lost: 314)
Player (injury, first game missed) – total games missed
Zach Bogosian (lower body, Jan. 11; injured reserve) – 37 games
Jake McCabe (shoulder, Feb. 8; injured reserve) – 27 games
Jacob Josefson (lower body. March 17) – 10 games
Linus Ullmark (upper body, March 26) – 5 games
Robin Lehner (lower body, March 31) – 3 games
Victor Antipin (concussion, April 2) – 2 games
Zemgus Girgensons (face, April 4) – 1 game

TRANSACTIONS IN PAST 7 DAYS
3/31: Assigned F Kyle Criscuolo to Rochester (AHL)
4/2: Recalled D Matt Tennyson from Rochester (AHL)
4/3: Recalled F Alexander Nylander and F Kevin Porter from Rochester (AHL)

REMAINING GAMES
Saturday, April 7: Buffalo at Florida, 7 p.m.

TONIGHT’S GAME
SABRES at LIGHTNING

  • This is the fourth and final meeting between the Sabres and Lightning this season.
  • Last meeting: Buffalo defeated Tampa Bay 2-1 in Tampa on Feb. 28
  • The Sabres are 3-6-1 in their last 10 games vs. the Lightning; 3-7-0 on the road.
  • This is the 98th game all-time between Buffalo and Tampa Bay; Buffalo has a 54-35-8 series record.
  • The Sabres are 29-17-3 on the road against the Lightning all-time.

THIS DATE IN SABRES HISTORY

  • The Sabres are 8-5-2 all-time on April 6.
  • April 6, 1980: Danny Gare scores twice in a 7-3 victory over the Toronto Maple Leafs at the Aud to finish the regular season with 56 goals.
  • April 6, 1995: Craig Muni appears in his 100th game as a member of the Sabres, a 1-1 tie at Boston.

THINGS YOU SHOULD KNOW

  • With wins in each of the last two meetings between these teams, the Sabres enter tonight’s game with consecutive wins against the Lightning for the first time since March 19, 2012 and Feb. 26, 2013. A win tonight would stretch that streak to three games for the first time since Buffalo won four in a row from Oct. 4, 2009 to March 27, 2010
  • Sam Reinhart has totaled 36 points (17+19) in his last 36 games dating back to Jan. 18. Reinhart has 19 goals in 41 games so far in 2018, tying him for 13th-most in the league since Jan. 1 entering play Thursday.

TOPPING TAMPA

  • The Sabres’ 29-17-3 (.622) record in Tampa Bay is the team’s best all-time road record against any Eastern Conference opponent. The team’s next best road record against an Eastern Conference opponent is its 41-27-11 (.589) mark at Washington.
  • Buffalo’s all-time record of 54-35-8 (.598) against Tampa Bay is the team’s third-best record against any Eastern Conference opponent, trailing only their 88-50-20 (.620) mark against Washington and their 115-69-26 (.610) record against Toronto.

WHO’S HOT?

  • Jack Eichel has recorded eight points (3+5) in his last five games and has played at a point-per-game pace dating back to mid-November, with 48 points (21+27) in his last 48 games.
  • Ryan O’Reilly has posted seven points (3+4) in his last six games, including each of his last four.
  • Sam Reinhart enters tonight’s game on a four-game point streak, with six points (4+2) in those games.
  • Rasmus Ristolainen has tallied five assists in his last four games.

BACK-TO-BACK
Tonight’s game opens up Buffalo’s final of 16 sets of back-to-back games this season, which continues tomorrow night at Florida. The Sabres are 5-10-0 in the first game of back-to-back sets and 5-8-2 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 (8), one point (2) and zero points (4).

ROAD WARRIORS

  • The Sabres enter tonight’s game with a 9-4-1 record in their last 14 road games.
  • Jack Eichel has 36 points (11+25) in 33 road games this season. Eichel’s 1.09 points per game on the road this season rank as the ninth-best rate in the NHL.
  • Sam Reinhart has totaled 18 points (11+7) in his last 18 road games.
  • Rasmus Ristolainen has recorded 17 points (4+13) in his last 19 road games.
  • Ryan O’Reilly has eight points (1+7) in his last seven road games.
  • Kyle Okposo has four points (2+2) his last four road games.
  • Jason Pominville has recorded a point in each of his last three road games (2+1).

QUARTER CENTURY KIDS

  • With his 25th goal of the season on March 29 vs. Detroit, Jack Eichel became the first Sabre aged 21 or younger to reach the 25-goal mark since Pierre Turgeon did so in the 1990-91 season.
  • Sam Reinhart (22 years old) is one goal shy of the 25-goal mark. If he scores another goal this season, the Sabres would have two 25-goal scorers under 23 years of age for the first time since Alexander Mogilny and Donald Audette each topped 25 as 22-year-olds in the 1991-92 season.

DRAWING ATTENTION*

  • Ryan O’Reilly, who leads the NHL in faceoffs won (1,239) and faceoff percentage (60.1%) this season, is climbing the single-season record books as well. His 1,239 wins through 79 games played rank second in NHL history and put him on pace to edge Rod Brind’Amour (1,268 in 2005-06) for the most by any NHL player in a season.
  • At his current pace, O’Reilly would become just the third player ever to win at least 1,000 faceoffs in a season while maintaining a faceoff percentage of at least 59 percent, joining Brind’Amour (five times) and Patrice Bergeron (two times).

*The NHL began keeping faceoff stats in the 1997-98 season.

I LIKE EICH

  • Despite missing 15 games with a high-ankle sprain, Jack Eichel has topped his previous personal bests in goals (24), assists (33) and points (57) on the strength of improved production at even strength.
  • With his 17th multi-point game in his 61st game of the season, Eichel surpassed his career-best total of 16 set in 2016-17. Through 65 games, Eichel now has 18 multi-point games.
  • 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 65 games, Eichel now has 22 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 65 games, he now has 42 even-strength points.

Jack Eichel’s Production by Season

Season GP G A PTS ES G ES A ES P
2015-16 81 24 32 56 16 19 35
2016-17 61 24 33 57 14 19 33
2017-18 65 25 37 62 22 20 42

SETTING THEM UP AND KNOCKING THEM DOWN

  • Of Jack Eichel’s 62 points so far this season, 27 have been goals or primary assists recorded during 5-on-5 play (excludes 6-on-5 situations).
  • Through 65 games played, Eichel’s 27 primary points (16+11) during 5-on-5 play have surpassed 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 before 4/5 games)

  • Eichel: 3.66 S/GP (7th)
  • O’Reilly: 1,239 FOW (1st), 60.1% FO% (1st), 2,061 FO (1st), 14 PPG (T-5th), 4 SHP (T-6th)
  • Ristolainen: 26:31 TOI/GP (4th)

BUF-TBL CONNECTIONS

Former Sabres:

  • Cory Conacher was a member of the Sabres for part of the 2013-14 season, when he posted six points (3+3) in 19 games for Buffalo.

Local Players:

  • Ryan Callahan was born in Rochester, New York and played for the Buffalo Lightning (OPJHL) during the 2001-02 season.

Nathan Beaulieu:

  • Teammates with Peter Budaj in Montreal from 2012-2014.

Justin Falk:

  • Teammates with Ryan Callahan, Anton Stralman and Dan Girardi for the New York Rangers in 2013-14.
  • Played with Tyler Johnson for the Spokane Chiefs (WHL) during the 2007-08 season.

Josh Gorges:

  • Represented Canada alongside Braydon Coburn at the 2004 World Junior Championship.
  • Played with Peter Budaj for the Montreal Canadiens from 2011-2014.

Chad Johnson:

  • Played with Ryan Callahan, Dan Girardi and Ryan McDonagh on the New York Rangers from 2009-2011.

Johan Larsson:

  • Played at the 2012 World Championship for Team Sweden alongside Victor Hedman.
  • Was born on July 25, 1992, two years to the day before Andrei Vasilevskiy.

Jordan Nolan:

  • Teammates with Peter Budaj for the Los Angeles Kings from 2015-2017.

Alex Nylander:

  • He and Brayden Point were both born in Calgary, Alberta.

Kyle Okposo:

  • Shares a hometown of St. Paul, Minnesota with Ryan McDonagh.

Ryan O’Reilly:

  • He was born on Feb. 7, 1991, exactly one year after Steven Stamkos.
  • Was teammates with Peter Budaj on the Colorado Avalanche from 2009-2011.

Benoit Pouliot:

  • Teammates with Ryan Callahan, Dan Girardi, Ryan McDonagh, J.T. Miller and Anton Stralman for the New York Rangers in 2013-14.

Sam Reinhart:

  • Brayden Point was a member of Team Canada along with Reinhart at the 2015 World Junior Championship.

Matt Tennyson:

  • Played with Yanni Gourde in the AHL on the Worcester Sharks from 2011-14.

Scott Wilson:

  • Teammates with Chris Kunitz for the Pittsburgh Penguins from 2014-2017.

World Championships:

  • Ryan O’Reilly represented Canada alongside Steven Stamkos in 2013, and again in 2016 World Cup.
  • Chad Johnson, Ryan O’Reilly, Brayden Point and Alex Killorn all played for Team Canada at the World Championship in 2017.
  • Victor Antipin, Andrei Vasilevskiy and Nikita Kucherov played together on the Russian team at the World Junior Championship in 2012.
  • Victor Antipin, Andrei Vasilevskiy and Nikita Kucherov were teammates for Russia at the 2017 World Championship.

NHL Draft:

  • Jason Pominville (55th overall) and Peter Budaj (63rd overall) were both selected in the second round of the 2001 NHL Draft.
  • Jacob Josefson (20th overall) and Victor Hedman (2nd overall) were both first round picks in the 2009 NHL Draft.
  • Nathan Beaulieu (17th overall) and J.T. Miller (15th overall) were both selected in the first round of the 2011 NHL Draft.
  • Zemgus Girgensons (14th overall), Slater Koekkoek (10th overall) and Andrei Vasilevskiy (19th overall) were all first-round picks in the 2012 NHL Draft.
  • Alex Nylander (8th overall) was taken one pick before Mikhail Sergachev (9th overall) in the 2016 NHL Draft.

SABRES REAL-TIME STATS LEADERS
Hits: Ristolainen (202), Girgensons (134), Nolan (122)
Blocked Shots: Scandella (111), Ristolainen (108), McCabe (79)
Shots: Eichel (238), O’Reilly (224), Reinhart (183)

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: 3-6-1 (7), 28/32, 6/24, 32/38
61-70: 5-4-1 (11), 24/31, 6/32, 20/25
71-80: 3-7-0 (6), 24/40, 9/36, 16/24

OVERTIME RESULTS (5-10; 113-121 all-time)
Oct. 17 at VGK: L, 5-4 (GWG-Perron, 3:52)
Oct. 21 at BOS: W, 5-4 (GWG-O’Reilly, 2:59)
Nov. 11 at MTL: L, 2-1 (GWG-Pacioretty, 3:08)
Nov. 14 at PIT: L, 5-4 (GWG-Sheary, 0:16)
Dec. 8 at CHI: L, 3-2 (GWG-Forsling, 4:55)
Dec. 10 at STL: L, 3-2 (GWG-Tarasenko, 4:24)
Dec. 15 vs. CAR: L, 5-4 (GWG-Slavin,2:15)
Dec. 27 at NYI: L, 3-2 (GWG-Barzal, 1:08)
Dec. 29 at NJD: W, 4-3 (GWG-Ristolainen, 2:37)
Jan. 1 vs. NYR: L, 3-2 (GWG-Miller, 2:43)
Jan. 22 at CGY: W, 2-1 (GWG-Eichel, 1:30)
Feb. 6 vs. ANA: L, 4-3 (GWG-Henrique, 1:36)
Feb. 15 at OTT: L, 3-2 (GWG-Hoffman,1:13)
Feb. 22 at DET: W, 3-2 (GWG-Scandella, 4:59)
Feb. 28 at TBL: W, 2-1 (GWG-Pominville, 1:26)

SHOOTOUT RESULTS (1-2; 70-66 all-time)
Oct. 5 vs. MTL: L, 3-2 (GDG-Drouin)
March 8 at OTT: W, 4-3 (GDG-Josefson)
March 10 vs. VGK: L, 2-1 (GDG-Haula)

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

RECENT MILESTONES
Jack Eichel … 100th NHL assist … March 31 at Nashville