Category Archives: Game Preview

Game Preview: 1/9/20 at St. Louis

GAME-DAY RESOURCES

Game Notes NHL Stats Press Clips

LAST GAME
Saturday, January 4
Florida 2 at Buffalo 3
Goals: Jokiharju, Sheary, Reinhart
Goalie: Ullmark (32 saves/34 shots)
PP: 1/3; PK: 3/3; Shots: Florida 34 – Buffalo 18

CURRENT INJURIES – (Man Games Lost: 196)
Player (injury, first game missed) – total games missed
Matt Hunwick (neck, Oct. 3; injured reserve) – 43 games
Vladimir Sobotka (knee, Nov. 9; injured reserve) – 27 games
Tage Thompson (upper body, Nov. 19; injured reserve) – 23 games
Jeff Skinner (upper body, Dec. 29; injured reserve) – 4 games
Victor Olofsson (lower body, Jan. 4; injured reserve) – 1 game
Jake McCabe (upper body, Jan. 9) – 0 games

TRANSACTIONS IN PAST 7 DAYS
1/3: Recalled F Scott Wilson from Rochester (AHL)
1/6: Assigned F Dalton Smith to Rochester (AHL)
1/7: Recalled D Lawrence Pilut from Rochester (AHL)
1/8: Placed F Victor Olofsson on IR

UPCOMING GAMES
Saturday, Jan. 11: Vancouver at Buffalo, 1 p.m.
Sunday, Jan. 12: Buffalo at Detroit, 5 p.m.
Tuesday, Jan. 14: Vegas at Buffalo, 7 p.m.
Thursday, Jan. 16: Buffalo at Dallas, 8:30 p.m.
Saturday, Jan. 18: Buffalo at Nashville, 8 p.m.

TONIGHT’S GAME
SABRES at BLUES

  • This is the second of two meetings between the Sabres and Blues this season.
  • Last meeting: Buffalo defeated St. Louis 5-2 in Buffalo on Dec. 10, 2019
  • The Sabres are 3-5-2 in their last 10 games vs. the Blues; 1-5-4 on the road.
  • This is the 122nd game all-time between Buffalo and St. Louis; Buffalo has a 48-56-17 series record.
  • The Sabres are 15-33-11 on the road against the Blues all-time.

THIS DATE IN SABRES HISTORY

  • The Sabres are 7-9-4 all-time on January 9.
  • January 9, 1977: Andre Savard scores three times in a span of 6:25 in the first period to earn the fourth natural hat trick in franchise history and help the Sabres down the Cleveland Barons 7-4 at the Aud.
  • January 9, 2007: Danny Briere, Brian Campbell and Ryan Miller are announced as starters for the 2007 NHL All-Star Game.

THINGS YOU SHOULD KNOW

  • After earning wins in the last two meetings between these teams, the Sabres are looking for their first win in St. Louis since Dec. 27, 2009.
  • With a win tonight, the Sabres would have three straight wins against the Blues for the first time since Oct. 22, 1995 to Nov. 1, 1996.
  • Linus Ullmark has stopped 79 of 85 shots (.929) in his three career meetings with the Blues.
  • Sam Reinhart has recorded a point in each of his four career games in St. Louis (2+2).
  • Jack Eichel has scored three goals in the three games between the Sabres and Blues since the beginning of last season.
  • Johan Larsson (2+1), Zemgus Girgensons (1+2), Brandon Montour (0+2) and Zach Bogosian (0+2) all enter tonight’s game with points in each of Buffalo’s last two games against St. Louis. Jimmy Vesey (1+1) has also posted points in both of his last two games against the Blues.
  • Henri Jokiharju has recorded three assists in two career visits to St. Louis, including his first two NHL points on Oct. 6, 2018 as a member of the Chicago Blackhawks.
  • Rasmus Dahlin’s .63 points per game so far this season represent the best scoring rate by a Sabres defenseman since Brian Campbell (.68) in 2007-08.

WHO’S HOT?

  • Marcus Johansson enters tonight’s game on a four-game point streak (1+5), marking his longest streak of the season. A point tonight would give him his longest point streak since he tallied points in five straight games from March 23 to 31, 2017 (1+9).
  • Jack Eichel has recorded points in each of Buffalo’s last four games (2+2). His current stretch trails only his run of 18 consecutive games played with a point (Nov. 16 to Dec. 21) for his longest streak this season.
  • Conor Sheary has recorded four points (2+2) in Buffalo’s last three games.
  • Sam Reinhart has totaled four points (2+2) in the Sabres’ last four contests.
  • Linus Ullmark has earned wins in each of his last two starts, stopping 57 of 61 shots faced (.934) against the Edmonton Oilers and Florida Panthers.

WELCOME TO BUFFALO

  • Michael Frolik is expected to make his Sabres debut in tonight’s game.
  • The Sabres acquired Frolik on Jan. 2 from the Calgary Flames in exchange for a fourth-round pick in the 2020 NHL Draft.
  • The 12-year NHL veteran has scored at least 15 goals in five of the last six seasons, including at least 10 goals at even strength in each of those five seasons.
  • Frolik has totaled 19 points (7+12) in 47 career NHL playoff contests, appearing in the postseason six times. He played in all 23 playoff games for the Chicago Blackhawks in 2013, culminating in his first Stanley Cup championship.
  • He has represented the Czech Republic in major international tournaments nine times in his career. Most recently, he served as an alternate captain and recorded 14 points (7+7) in 10 games at the 2019 IIHF World Championship.

TAKE ME TO THE PILUT

  • The Sabres recalled defenseman Lawrence Pilut from the Rochester Americans on Tuesday. He had totaled seven points (3+4) in his last seven games with the Amerks prior to being recalled.
  • Pilut, who was previously recalled for the team’s trip to Sweden for the 2019 NHL Global Series, has yet to appear in an NHL game this season.
  • The Tingsryd, Sweden native played in 33 games with the Sabres during his first NHL season in 2018-19 and led all AHL defensemen (min. 5 GP) with .87 points per game after totaling 26 points (4+22) with the Americans last season.
  • He has been selected to play in the AHL All-Star Classic in both of his first two AHL seasons (didn’t participate in 2019 due to a recall to Buffalo).

JACK ATTACK

  • Entering play Wednesday, Jack Eichel’s 26 goals tied for third among all NHL players and his 55 points tied for eighth in the league.
  • Eichel has been selected to represent the Sabres at NHL All-Star Weekend on Jan. 24 and 25 in St. Louis. With his third consecutive All-Star nod, Eichel becomes the seventh player in franchise history to represent the team in at least three NHL All-Star Games, joining Rick Martin (7), Gilbert Perreault (6), Dominik Hasek (5), Mike Ramsey (4), Phil Housley (3) and Alexander Mogilny (3).
  • With his 50th point of the season on Dec. 17 at Toronto, Eichel became the first Sabre to reach 50 points in 35 or fewer games since 1992-93 (Pat LaFontaine and Alexander Mogilny). He joins Rick Martin as the only other player in franchise history to record at least 20 goals and 50 points in each of his first five NHL seasons.
  • Eichel hasn’t been held without a point in three consecutive appearances since early November. In his 26 games played since then, he has totaled 38 points (19+19), including a stretch of 18 straight games (Nov. 16 to Dec. 21) that tied Gilbert Perreault (Oct. 24 to Dec. 4, 1971) for the most consecutive games played with a point in franchise history.
  • The streak was the NHL’s fifth-longest personal point streak in the last decade, trailing only Taylor Hall (26 in 2017-18), Patrick Kane (26 in 2015-16), Sidney Crosby (25 in 2010-11) and Patrick Kane (20 in 2018-19).

SETTING THE PACE

  • With 26 goals in 42 games so far this season, Jack Eichel is two goals from tying his previous best total set in the 2018-19 season.
  • Eichel’s output through 43 team games currently has him on pace to finish the season with 50 goals and 106 points, which would be the highest goal and point totals by a Sabre since Pat LaFontaine (53+95) and Alexander Mogilny (76+51) in 1992-93.
  • LaFontaine (83 in 1992-93) and Mogilny (78 in 1992-93) are the only Sabres ever to have recorded more even-strength points in a season than the 73 Eichel is currently on pace for.
  • Sam Reinhart’s 14 goals in 43 games put him on pace for a career-high goal total (27).

POINTS IN BUNCHES

  • Jack Eichel has recorded 15 multi-point games this season, tying for 11th-most in the NHL before Wednesday’s games.
  • Entering play Wednesday, his six multi-goal games tied for second-most in the league and his eight multi-assist games tied for seventh-most.
  • Eichel has already recorded at least three points seven times this season, topping his previous career-high total (6) set in the 2016-17 season. Only Connor McDavid (10) and Leon Draisaitl (8) had more games with at least three points this season entering play Wednesday.
  • Eichel’s three games with at least four points this season tied for third-most in the league before Wednesday’s games. Since he entered the league in 2015-16, only nine players had totaled at least four points more times than Eichel’s eight: Nikita Kucherov (15), Patrick Kane (12), Connor McDavid (11), Johnny Gaudreau (9), Nathan MacKinnon (0), Brad Marchand (9), Alex Ovechkin (9), Artemi Panarin (9) and Steven Stamkos (9).

SABRES AMONG LEAGUE-LEADERS (Sabres’ league rankings before 1/8 games)

  • Eichel: 19 EVG (2nd), 26 G (T-3rd), 5 GWG (T-6th), 38 EVP (T-7th), 55 PTS (T-8th)
  • Hutton: 2 SO (T-5th)
  • Olofsson: 9 PPG (T-3rd)
  • Ristolainen: 133 hits (T-10th)

SABRES REAL-TIME STATS LEADERS
Hits: Ristolainen (133), Girgensons (65), McCabe (60)
Blocked Shots: McCabe (61), Ristolainen (51), Jokiharju (37)
Shots: Eichel (147), Skinner (128), Olofsson (99)

SABRES’ RECORD IN 10 GAME SEGMENTS [W-L-OTL (PTS), GF/GA, PP, PK]
1-10: 8-1-1 (17), 38/24, 12/39, 23/30
11-20: 2-6-2 (6), 21/35, 2/26, 21/29
21-30: 3-4-3 (8), 34/34, 4/33, 23/32
31-40: 4-5-1 (9), 24/32, 4/23, 23/30
41-50: 2-1-0 (4), 10/10, 1/9, 7/9

OVERTIME RESULTS (4-6; 124-134 all-time)
Oct. 7 at CBJ: L, 4-3 (GWG-Texier, 2:08)
Oct. 9 vs. MTL: W, 5-4 (GWG-Johansson, 1:30)
Oct. 22 vs. SJS: W, 4-3 (GWG-Eichel, 3:13)
Nov. 14 vs. CAR: L, 5-4 (GWG-Hamilton, 2:28)
Nov. 27 vs. CGY: L, 3-2 (GWG-Lindholm, 1:17)
Nov. 30 at TOR: L, 2-1 (GWG-Tavares, 1:45)
Dec. 7 at VAN: L, 6-5 (GWG-Miller, 3:21)
Dec. 8 at EDM: W, 3-2 (GWG-Miller, 1:13)
Dec. 14 at NYI: L, 3-2 (GWG-Beauvillier, 3:04)
Jan. 2 vs. EDM: W, 3-2 (GWG-Eichel, 1:09)

SHOOTOUT RESULTS (1-1; 76-70 all-time)
Oct. 11 vs. FLA: W, 3-2 (GDG-Eichel)
Oct. 28 vs. ARI: L, 3-2 (GDG-Schmaltz)

MILESTONES APPROACHING (Player … Needs … Milestone)
Games Played
Conor Sheary … 2 games … 300 career games played
Linus Ullmark … 10 games … 100 career games played
Goals
Kyle Okposo … 9 goals … 200 career goals
Points
Kyle Okposo … 5 points … 500 career points
Zach Bogosian … 7 points … 200 career points
Johan Larsson … 9 points … 100 career points

RECENT MILESTONES
N/A

Game Preview: 1/4/20 vs. Florida

GAME-DAY RESOURCES

Game Notes NHL Stats Press Clips

LAST GAME
Thursday, January 2
Edmonton 2 at Buffalo 3 (OT)
Goals: Lazar, Reinhart, Eichel
Goalie: Ullmark (25 saves/27 shots)
PP: 0/2; PK: 1/1; Shots: Edmonton 27 – Buffalo 26

CURRENT INJURIES – (Man Games Lost: 191)
Player (injury, first game missed) – total games missed
Matt Hunwick (neck, Oct. 3; injured reserve) – 42 games
Vladimir Sobotka (knee, Nov. 9; injured reserve) – 26 games
Tage Thompson (upper body, Nov. 19; injured reserve) – 22 games
Jeff Skinner (upper body, Dec. 29; injured reserve) – 3 games
Victor Olofsson (lower body, Jan. 4) – 0 games

TRANSACTIONS IN PAST 7 DAYS
12/30: Signed F Dalton Smith to a one-year, two-way contract worth $700,000; Placed F Jeff Skinner on IR
1/2: Placed F Dalton Smith on waivers; Acquired a fourth-round pick in the 2020 NHL Draft from the Montreal Canadiens in exchange for D Marco Scandella; Acquired F Michael Frolik from the Calgary Flames in exchange for a fourth-round pick in the 2020 NHL Draft
1/3: Recalled F Scott Wilson from Rochester (AHL)

UPCOMING GAMES
Thursday, Jan. 9: Buffalo at St. Louis, 8 p.m.
Saturday, Jan. 11: Vancouver at Buffalo, 1 p.m.
Sunday, Jan. 12: Buffalo at Detroit, 5 p.m.
Tuesday, Jan. 14: Vegas at Buffalo, 7 p.m.
Thursday, Jan. 16: Buffalo at Dallas, 8:30 p.m.

TODAY’S GAME
PANTHERS at SABRES

  • This is the third of four meetings between the Sabres and Panthers this season.
  • Last meeting: Buffalo defeated Florida 5-2 in Florida on Nov. 24, 2019
  • Next meeting: Thursday, March 19 in Florida
  • The Sabres are 3-6-1 in their last 10 games vs. the Panthers; 4-6-0 at home.
  • This is the 103rd game all-time between Buffalo and Florida; Buffalo has a 51-42-9 series record.
  • The Sabres are 29-19-4 at home against the Panthers all-time.

THIS DATE IN SABRES HISTORY

  • The Sabres are 6-8-3 all-time on January 4.
  • January 4, 1976: The Sabres defeat the Soviet Wings 12-6 in an international exhibition game at Buffalo Memorial Auditorium, handing the Soviets the worst loss ever by a USSR squad in international play. The Sabres were one of only two teams from the NHL to defeat the Wings on their tour.
  • January 4, 1984: Real Cloutier scores his second hat trick in six days and Gilbert Perreault registers five assists as the Sabres roll to a 9-4 win at Winnipeg.

THINGS YOU SHOULD KNOW

  • With wins in their first two meetings of the season, the Sabres have multiple victories against the Panthers in a season for the first time since 2016-17. A win today would give Buffalo wins in three consecutive matchups with Florida for the first time since they won three straight from Feb. 10 to Oct. 20, 2011.
  • Sam Reinhart has 19 points (9+10) in 19 career games against the Panthers, including six multi-point games. It’s his highest point total against any NHL team and ties his rate against Nashville (6+3 in 9 GP) for his best career per-game output against any opponent.
  • Jack Eichel has posted 10 points (2+8) in his last 10 matchups with the Panthers, including the game-winner in the last game between the teams and the shootout winner in their first meeting of the season.
  • Zemgus Girgensons has recorded at least a point in each of his last three games against Florida, totaling five points (2+3) in those contests.
  • Johan Larsson (1+2) has also contributed a point in each of the Sabres’ last three games against the Panthers.
  • Conor Sheary has totaled nine points (2+7) in nine games against the Panthers since the beginning of the 2016-17 season.
  • Carter Hutton is 2-1-0 in four career appearances against the Panthers with a .933 save percentage and a 2.03 goals-against average.
  • Linus Ullmark has posted a 4-2-1 record in seven career games against Florida with a .927 save percentage and a 2.81 goals-against average.
  • Rasmus Dahlin’s .62 points per game so far this season represent the best scoring rate by a Sabres defenseman since Brian Campbell (.68) in 2007-08.

HOME COOKING

  • The Sabres are 12-5-3 through their first 20 home games of the season. The team has totaled 27 points through its first 20 home games for the second consecutive season.
  • The team’s .675 points percentage at home ranked 10th in the NHL before Friday’s games. If they finished the season at this pace, it would tie as the Sabres’ 11th-best home record ever and would be their best since the 1989-90 season (27-11-2, .700).
  • With 33 points (19+14) in 20 home games this season, Jack Eichel’s 1.65 points per game at home tied for second in the league entering play Friday. His plus-19 rating at home led the league, with Colorado’s Ryan Graves ranking second at plus-15.
  • Sam Reinhart (8+10) is also producing near a point-per-game rate through 20 home games this season. Reinhart has totaled seven points (2+5) in his last six games at KeyBank Center.
  • Johan Larsson has recorded six points (1+5) and a plus-7 rating in his last six home games.
  • Conor Sheary has posted five points (3+2) and a plus-4 rating in his last four home games.
  • Linus Ullmark has won six of his last eight games at KeyBank Center, posting a .915 save percentage and a 2.64 goals-against average in those games.

JACK ATTACK

  • Jack Eichel has been selected to represent the Sabres at NHL All-Star Weekend on Jan. 24 and 25 in St. Louis. With his third consecutive All-Star nod, Eichel becomes the seventh player in franchise history to represent the team in at least three NHL All-Star Games, joining Rick Martin (7), Gilbert Perreault (6), Dominik Hasek (5), Mike Ramsey (4), Phil Housley (3) and Alexander Mogilny (3).
  • Entering play Friday, Eichel’s 25 goals ranked third among all NHL players and his 54 points ranked him eighth in the league.
  • With his 50th point of the season on Dec. 17 at Toronto, Eichel became the first Sabre to reach 50 points in 35 or fewer games since 1992-93 (Pat LaFontaine and Alexander Mogilny). He joins Rick Martin as the only other player in franchise history to record at least 20 goals and 50 points in each of his first five NHL seasons.
  • Eichel hasn’t been held without a point in three consecutive appearances since early November. In his 25 games played since then, he has totaled 37 points (19+18), including a stretch of 18 straight games (Nov. 16 to Dec. 21) that tied Gilbert Perreault (Oct. 24 to Dec. 4, 1971) for the most consecutive games played with a point in franchise history.
  • The streak was the NHL’s fifth-longest personal point streak in the last decade, trailing only Taylor Hall (26 in 2017-18), Patrick Kane (26 in 2015-16), Sidney Crosby (25 in 2010-11) and Patrick Kane (20 in 2018-19).

SETTING THE PACE

  • With 26 goals in 41 games so far this season, Jack Eichel is two goals from tying his previous best total set in the 2018-19 season.
  • Eichel’s output through 42 team games currently has him on pace to finish the season with 51 goals and 107 points, which would be the highest goal and point totals by a Sabre since Pat LaFontaine (53+95) and Alexander Mogilny (76+51) in 1992-93.
  • LaFontaine (83 in 1992-93) and Mogilny (78 in 1992-93) are the only Sabres ever to have recorded more even-strength points in a season than the 73 Eichel is currently on pace for.
  • Sam Reinhart’s 13 goals in 42 games put him on pace to tie his career-high goal total (25) from 2017-18.

POINTS IN BUNCHES

  • Jack Eichel has recorded 15 multi-point games this season, tying for 11th-most in the NHL.
  • Entering play Friday, his six multi-goal games ranked second in the league and his eight multi-assist games tied for sixth-most.
  • Eichel has already recorded at least three points seven times this season, topping his previous career-high total (6) set in the 2016-17 season. Only Connor McDavid (9) and Leon Draisaitl (8) had more games with at least three points this season entering play Friday.
  • Eichel’s three games with at least four points this season tied for second-most in the league before Friday’s games. Since he entered the league in 2015-16, only nine players had totaled at least four points more times than Eichel’s eight: Nikita Kucherov (15), Patrick Kane (12), Connor McDavid (10), Johnny Gaudreau (9), Nathan MacKinnon (0), Brad Marchand (9), Alex Ovechkin (9), Artemi Panarin (9) and Steven Stamkos (9).

SABRES AMONG LEAGUE-LEADERS (Sabres’ league rankings before 1/3 games)

  • Eichel: 19 EVG (2nd), 26 G (3rd), 37 EVP (T-4th), 5 GWG (T-6th), 54 PTS (8th)
  • Hutton: 2 SO (T-5th)
  • Olofsson: 9 PPG (T-3rd)
  • Ristolainen: 132 hits (7th)

SABRES REAL-TIME STATS LEADERS
Hits: Ristolainen (132), Girgensons (63), McCabe (60)
Blocked Shots: McCabe (60), Ristolainen (48), Jokiharju (37)
Shots: Eichel (142), Skinner (128), Olofsson (99)

SABRES’ RECORD IN 10 GAME SEGMENTS [W-L-OTL (PTS), GF/GA, PP, PK]
1-10: 8-1-1 (17), 38/24, 12/39, 23/30
11-20: 2-6-2 (6), 21/35, 2/26, 21/29
21-30: 3-4-3 (8), 34/34, 4/33, 23/32
31-40: 4-5-1 (9), 24/32, 4/23, 23/30
41-50: 1-1-0 (2), 7/8, 0/6, 4/6

OVERTIME RESULTS (4-6; 124-134 all-time)
Oct. 7 at CBJ: L, 4-3 (GWG-Texier, 2:08)
Oct. 9 vs. MTL: W, 5-4 (GWG-Johansson, 1:30)
Oct. 22 vs. SJS: W, 4-3 (GWG-Eichel, 3:13)
Nov. 14 vs. CAR: L, 5-4 (GWG-Hamilton, 2:28)
Nov. 27 vs. CGY: L, 3-2 (GWG-Lindholm, 1:17)
Nov. 30 at TOR: L, 2-1 (GWG-Tavares, 1:45)
Dec. 7 at VAN: L, 6-5 (GWG-Miller, 3:21)
Dec. 8 at EDM: W, 3-2 (GWG-Miller, 1:13)
Dec. 14 at NYI: L, 3-2 (GWG-Beauvillier, 3:04)
Jan. 2 vs. EDM: W, 3-2 (GWG-Eichel, 1:09)

SHOOTOUT RESULTS (1-1; 76-70 all-time)
Oct. 11 vs. FLA: W, 3-2 (GDG-Eichel)
Oct. 28 vs. ARI: L, 3-2 (GDG-Schmaltz)

MILESTONES APPROACHING (Player … Needs … Milestone)
Games Played
Conor Sheary … 3 games … 300 career games played
Goals
Kyle Okposo … 9 goals … 200 career goals
Points
Kyle Okposo … 5 points … 500 career points
Zach Bogosian … 7 points … 200 career points
Johan Larsson … 9 points … 100 career points 

RECENT MILESTONES
Dalton Smith … 1st NHL game … 12/31 vs. TBL
Sam Reinhart … 100th NHL goal … 1/2 vs. EDM

Game Preview: 1/2/20 vs. Edmonton

GAME-DAY RESOURCES

Game Notes NHL Stats Press Clips

LAST GAME
Tuesday, December 31
Tampa Bay 6 at Buffalo 4
Goals: Sheary, Johansson, Vesey, Eichel
Goalie: Ullmark (21 saves/26 shots)
PP: 0/4; PK: 3/5; Shots: Buffalo 27 – Tampa Bay 27

CURRENT INJURIES – (Man Games Lost: 187)
Player (injury, first game missed) – total games missed
Matt Hunwick (neck, Oct. 3; injured reserve) – 41 games
Vladimir Sobotka (knee, Nov. 9; injured reserve) – 25 games
Tage Thompson (upper body, Nov. 19; injured reserve) – 21 games
Jeff Skinner (upper body, Dec. 29; injured reserve) – 2 games

TRANSACTIONS IN PAST 7 DAYS
12/27: Recalled F Curtis Lazar from Rochester (AHL)
12/30: Signed F Dalton Smith to a one-year, two-way contract worth $700,000; Placed F Jeff Skinner on IR

UPCOMING GAMES
Saturday, Jan. 4: Florida at Buffalo, 1 p.m.
Thursday, Jan. 9: Buffalo at St. Louis, 8 p.m.
Saturday, Jan. 11: Vancouver at Buffalo, 1 p.m.
Sunday, Jan. 12: Buffalo at Detroit, 5 p.m.
Tuesday, Jan. 14: Vegas at Buffalo, 7 p.m.

TONIGHT’S GAME
OILERS at SABRES

  • This is the second of two meetings between the Sabres and Oilers this season.
  • Last meeting: Buffalo defeated Edmonton 3-2 (OT) in Edmonton on Dec. 8, 2019
  • The Sabres are 5-4-1 in their last 10 games vs. the Oilers; 5-4-1 at home.
  • This is the 79th game all-time between Buffalo and Edmonton; Buffalo has a 27-40-11 series record.
  • The Sabres are 15-16-8 at home against the Oilers all-time.

THIS DATE IN SABRES HISTORY

  • The Sabres are 6-6-5 all-time on January 2.
  • January 2, 1993: Alexander Mogilny scores his third hat trick in an 11-day span in a 7-2 win at Ottawa. Mogilny would finish the season with seven hat tricks, tying Rick Martin’s franchise record set in 1975-76.
  • January 2, 1999: Miroslav Satan extends his goal streak to eight games with a game-winning tally in a 7-1 win at home against Calgary.

THINGS YOU SHOULD KNOW

  • With a win tonight, the Sabres would sweep the season series with the Oilers for the third time in four seasons. Edmonton won both matchups in the 2018-19 season. The teams haven’t split a series since 2013-14, the first season that they resumed facing off twice a year.
  • Kyle Okposo has tallied 15 points (8+7) in 15 career games against Edmonton. The Oilers are one of four NHL teams (San Jose, Vancouver, Vegas) that he has recorded exactly a point per game against, his highest per-game rate against any team.
  • Rasmus Ristolainen has 14 points (2+12) in 12 career games against the Oilers, including at least a point in six of his seven meetings with Edmonton since the beginning of the 2016-17 season. It’s his highest point total and best career per-game output against any NHL opponent.
  • Jack Eichel has totaled 10 points (5+5) in eight career games against Edmonton.
  • Victor Olofsson recorded 14 points (6+8) in 14 games in December. He leads all NHL rookies in goals (16) and points (34) this season.
  • Rasmus Dahlin’s .64 points per game so far this season represent the best scoring rate by a Sabres defenseman since Brian Campbell (.68) in 2007-08.

PACIFIC DIVISION

  • Buffalo enters tonight’s game with a 5-2-3 record against the Pacific Division in 2019-20, including a 2-0-2 mark at home.
  • Since the beginning of last season, Edmonton is the only Pacific Division team to win a game in Buffalo in regulation.
  • The Sabres are 8-1-3 at home against the division during that span, including a 4-3 record in games that were tied after regulation.

HOME COOKING

  • The Sabres are 11-5-3 through their first 19 home games of the season. The team has yet to go three straight home games without recording a point in 2019-20.
  • With 32 points (18+14) in 19 home games this season, Jack Eichel’s 1.68 points per game at home rank second in the league. His plus-19 rating at home leads the league, with Colorado’s Ryan Graves ranking second at plus-15.
  • Victor Olofsson (9+9) and Sam Reinhart (7+10) are also producing near a point-per-game rate through 19 home games this season.
  • Johan Larsson has recorded seven points (2+5) and a plus-7 rating in his last seven home games.
  • Linus Ullmark has won five of his last six games at KeyBank Center, posting a .914 save percentage and a 2.74 goals-against average in those games.

JACK ATTACK

  • Jack Eichel has been selected to represent the Sabres at NHL All-Star Weekend on Jan. 24 and 25 in St. Louis. With his third consecutive All-Star nod, Eichel becomes the seventh player in franchise history to represent the team in at least three NHL All-Star Games, joining Rick Martin (7), Gilbert Perreault (6), Dominik Hasek (5), Mike Ramsey (4), Phil Housley (3) and Alexander Mogilny (3).
  • Eichel’s 24 goals tie for third-most among all NHL players and his 52 points tie for seventh-most in the league.
  • With his 50th point of the season on Dec. 17 at Toronto, Eichel became the first Sabre to reach 50 points in 35 or fewer games since 1992-93 (Pat LaFontaine and Alexander Mogilny). He joins Rick Martin as the only other player in franchise history to record at least 20 goals and 50 points in each of his first five NHL seasons.
  • Eichel hasn’t been held without a point in three consecutive appearances since early November. In his 24 games played since then, he has totaled 36 points (18+18), including a stretch of 18 straight games (Nov. 16 to Dec. 21) that tied Gilbert Perreault (Oct. 24 to Dec. 4, 1971) for the most consecutive games played with a point in franchise history.
  • The streak was the NHL’s fifth-longest personal point streak in the last decade, trailing only Taylor Hall (26 in 2017-18), Patrick Kane (26 in 2015-16), Sidney Crosby (25 in 2010-11) and Patrick Kane (20 in 2018-19).

SETTING THE PACE

  • With 25 goals in 40 games so far this season, Jack Eichel is on pace to shatter his previous best goal total (28), set in the 2018-19 season.
  • Eichel’s output through 41 team games currently has him on pace to finish the season with 51 goals and 107 points, which would be the highest goal and point totals by a Sabre since Pat LaFontaine (53+95) and Alexander Mogilny (76+51) in 1992-93.
  • LaFontaine (83 in 1992-93) and Mogilny (78 in 1992-93) are the only Sabres ever to have recorded more even-strength points in a season than the 73 Eichel is currently on pace for.
  • Victor Olofsson’s goal and point totals currently have him on pace for the best offensive season by a Sabres rookie in decades. If he maintains his current pace, he would finish the season with the most goals by a Sabres rookie (32) since Ray Sheppard’s 38 in 1987-88 and the third-most points ever recorded by a Sabres rookie (68), trailing only Rick Martin (74 in 1971-72) and Gilbert Perreault (72 on 1970-71).

POINTS IN BUNCHES

  • Jack Eichel has recorded 15 multi-point games this season, tying for 10th-most in the NHL.
  • His six multi-goal games rank second in the league and his eight multi-assist games tie for fifth-most.
  • Eichel has already recorded at least three points seven times this season, topping his previous career-high total (6) set in the 2016-17 season. Only Connor McDavid (9) and Leon Draisaitl (8) have more games with at least three points this season.
  • Eichel’s three games with at least four points this season tie for the league lead. Since he entered the league in 2015-16, only eight players had totaled at least four points more times than Eichel’s eight: Nikita Kucherov (15), Patrick Kane (12), Connor McDavid (10), Johnny Gaudreau (9), Brad Marchand (9), Alex Ovechkin (9), Artemi Panarin (9) and Steven Stamkos (9).

SABRES AMONG LEAGUE-LEADERS (Sabres’ league rankings before 1/1 game)

  • Eichel: 18 EVG (2nd), 25 G (3rd), 36 EVP (T-4th), 53 PTS (T-7th), 4 GWG (T-10th)
  • Hutton: 2 SO (T-5th)
  • Olofsson: 9 PPG (T-3rd)
  • Ristolainen: 127 hits (8th)

SABRES REAL-TIME STATS LEADERS
Hits: Ristolainen (127), Girgensons (61), McCabe (60)
Blocked Shots: McCabe (60), Ristolainen (47), Jokiharju (37)
Shots: Eichel (141), Skinner (128), Olofsson (98)

SABRES’ RECORD IN 10 GAME SEGMENTS [W-L-OTL (PTS), GF/GA, PP, PK]
1-10: 8-1-1 (17), 38/24, 12/39, 23/30
11-20: 2-6-2 (6), 21/35, 2/26, 21/29
21-30: 3-4-3 (8), 34/34, 4/33, 23/32
31-40: 4-5-1 (9), 24/32, 4/23, 23/30
41-50: 0-1-0 (0), 4/6, 0/4, 3/5

OVERTIME RESULTS (3-6; 123-134 all-time)
Oct. 7 at CBJ: L, 4-3 (GWG-Texier, 2:08)
Oct. 9 vs. MTL: W, 5-4 (GWG-Johansson, 1:30)
Oct. 22 vs. SJS: W, 4-3 (GWG-Eichel, 3:13)
Nov. 14 vs. CAR: L, 5-4 (GWG-Hamilton, 2:28)
Nov. 27 vs. CGY: L, 3-2 (GWG-Lindholm, 1:17)
Nov. 30 at TOR: L, 2-1 (GWG-Tavares, 1:45)
Dec. 7 at VAN: L, 6-5 (GWG-Miller, 3:21)
Dec. 8 at EDM: W, 3-2 (GWG-Miller, 1:13)
Dec. 14 at NYI: L, 3-2 (GWG-Beauvillier, 3:04)

SHOOTOUT RESULTS (1-1; 76-70 all-time)
Oct. 11 vs. FLA: W, 3-2 (GDG-Eichel)
Oct. 28 vs. ARI: L, 3-2 (GDG-Schmaltz)

MILESTONES APPROACHING (Player … Needs … Milestone)
Games Played
Conor Sheary … 4 games … 300 career games played
Goals
Sam Reinhart … 1 goal … 100 career goals
Kyle Okposo … 9 goals … 200 career goals
Assists
Marco Scandella … 8 assists … 100 career assists
Points
Kyle Okposo … 5 points … 500 career points
Zach Bogosian … 8 points … 200 career points

RECENT MILESTONES
Jeff Skinner … 700th NHL game … 12/27 vs. BOS
Dalton Smith … 1st NHL game … 12/31 vs. TBL

Game Preview: 12/31/19 vs. Tampa Bay

GAME-DAY RESOURCES

Game Notes NHL Stats Press Clips

LAST GAME
Sunday, December 29
Buffalo 2 at Boston 3
Goals: Ristolainen, Lazar
Goalie: Ullmark (19 saves/22 shots)
PP: 0/3; PK: 4/6; Shots: Buffalo 26 – Boston 22

CURRENT INJURIES – (Man Games Lost: 183)
Player (injury, first game missed) – total games missed
Matt Hunwick (neck, Oct. 3; injured reserve) – 40 games
Vladimir Sobotka (knee, Nov. 9; injured reserve) – 24 games
Tage Thompson (upper body, Nov. 19; injured reserve) – 20 games
Marco Scandella (illness, Dec. 27) – 2 games
Jeff Skinner (upper body, Dec. 29; injured reserve) – 1 game

TRANSACTIONS IN PAST 7 DAYS
12/27: Recalled F Curtis Lazar from Rochester (AHL)
12/30: Signed F Dalton Smith to a one-year, two-way contract worth $700,000; Placed F Jeff Skinner on IR

UPCOMING GAMES
Thursday, Jan. 2: Edmonton at Buffalo, 7 p.m.
Saturday, Jan. 4: Florida at Buffalo, 1 p.m.
Thursday, Jan. 9: Buffalo at St. Louis, 8 p.m.
Saturday, Jan. 11: Vancouver at Buffalo, 1 p.m.
Sunday, Jan. 12: Buffalo at Detroit, 5 p.m.

TONIGHT’S GAME
LIGHTNING at SABRES

  • This is the fourth and final meeting between the Sabres and Lightning this season.
  • Last meeting: Tampa Bay defeated Buffalo 5-2 in Tampa on Nov. 25
  • The Sabres are 3-6-1 in their last 10 games vs. the Lightning; 2-7-1 at home.
  • This is the 106th game all-time between Buffalo and Tampa Bay; Buffalo has a 55-41-9 series record.
  • The Sabres are 26-20-5 at home against the Lightning all-time.

THIS DATE IN SABRES HISTORY

  • The Sabres are 13-14-5 all-time on December 31.
  • December 31, 1987: The Sabres trade Paul Cyr and a 10th-round draft pick in 1988 (Eric Fenton) to the New York Rangers for Mike Donnelly and a fifth-round pick in 1988 (Alexander Mogilny).
  • December 31, 1993: Alexander Mogilny appears in his 300th NHL game and Dominik Hasek stops 39 of 40 shots as the Sabres defeat the Rangers 4-1 at Buffalo Memorial Auditorium.
  • December 31, 1997: Michael Peca scores two shorthanded goals in a 3-0 win over Ottawa. Peca still shares the franchise record for most shorthanded goals scored in one game by a single player with Don Luce, Bob Sweeney, Alexei Zhitnik and Evander Kane.

THINGS YOU SHOULD KNOW

  • The Sabres are 12-11-3 all-time in New Year’s Eve home games, including a 5-1 loss against the Lightning on Dec. 31, 2014.
  • Sam Reinhart has recorded 11 points (9+2) in his last 10 games against the Lightning, including at least one goal in five of the last six meetings.
  • Jack Eichel has totaled six points (1+5) in his last six meetings with the Lightning, including three points (1+2) in three games so far this season.
  • Victor Olofsson has tallied a point in each of his first three career matchups with Tampa Bay this season (1+2).
  • Olofsson has recorded 20 points (9+11) in his last 20 games. He has failed to record a point in just five of those 20 games and leads all NHL rookies in goals (16) and points (34) this season.
  • If he dresses, tonight’s game will be the first of Dalton Smith’s NHL career.

HOME COOKING

  • The Sabres are 11-4-3 (.694) through their first 18 home games of the season, putting the team on pace for its 12th-best home record in a season and its best since 2006-07.
  • Linus Ullmark has won five of his last six games at KeyBank Center, posting a .928 save percentage and a 2.35 goals-against average in those games.
  • With 31 points (17+14) in 18 home games this season, Jack Eichel’s 1.72 points per game at home ranked second in the league entering play Monday. His plus-21 rating at home led the league, with Colorado’s Ryan Graves ranking second at plus-15.
  • Victor Olofsson is also playing at a point-per-game pace at home this season, totaling 18 points (9+9) in 18 home games.
  • Sam Reinhart is just one point off of a point-per-game pace at home in 2019-20, having recorded 17 points (7+10) in 18 home games, including two-point outings in three of the team’s last four games at KeyBank Center.
  • Johan Larsson has recorded seven points (2+5) and a plus-7 rating in his last six home games.

JACK ATTACK

  • Jack Eichel has been selected to represent the Sabres at NHL All-Star Weekend on Jan. 24 and 25 in St. Louis. With his third consecutive All-Star nod, Eichel becomes the seventh player in franchise history to represent the team in at least three NHL All-Star Games, joining Rick Martin (7), Gilbert Perreault (6), Dominik Hasek (5), Mike Ramsey (4), Phil Housley (3) and Alexander Mogilny (3).
  • Entering play Monday, Eichel’s 24 goals tied for third-most among all NHL players and his 52 points were the seventh-most in the league.
  • With his 50th point of the season on Dec. 17 at Toronto, Eichel became the first Sabre to reach 50 points in 35 or fewer games since 1992-93 (Pat LaFontaine and Alexander Mogilny). He joins Rick Martin as the only other player in franchise history to record at least 20 goals and 50 points in each of his first five NHL seasons.
  • Eichel hasn’t been held without a point in three consecutive appearances since early November. In his 23 games played since then, he has totaled 35 points (17+18), including a stretch of 18 straight games (Nov. 16 to Dec. 21) that tied Gilbert Perreault (Oct. 24 to Dec. 4, 1971) for the most consecutive games played with a point in franchise history.
  • The streak was the NHL’s fifth-longest personal point streak in the last decade, trailing only Taylor Hall (26 in 2017-18), Patrick Kane (26 in 2015-16), Sidney Crosby (25 in 2010-11) and Patrick Kane (20 in 2018-19).

SETTING THE PACE

  • With 24 goals in 39 games so far this season, Jack Eichel is on pace to shatter his previous best goal total (28), set in the 2018-19 season.
  • Eichel’s output through 40 team games currently has him on pace to finish the season with 50 goals and 108 points, which would be the highest goal and point totals by a Sabre since Pat LaFontaine (53+95) and Alexander Mogilny (76+51) in 1992-93.
  • LaFontaine (83 in 1992-93) and Mogilny (78 in 1992-93) are the only Sabres ever to have recorded more even-strength points in a season than the 75 Eichel is currently on pace for.
  • Victor Olofsson’s goal and point totals currently have him on pace for the best offensive season by a Sabres rookie in decades. If he maintains his current pace, he would finish the season with the most goals by a Sabres rookie (33) since Ray Sheppard’s 38 in 1987-88 and the third-most points ever recorded by a Sabres rookie (70), trailing only Rick Martin (74 in 1971-72) and Gilbert Perreault (72 on 1970-71).
  • Rasmus Dahlin, who has missed eight games due to injury this season, is currently on pace to record 49 points this season, which would be the highest total by a Sabres defenseman since Garry Galley’s 54 in 1995-96.
  • Sam Reinhart’s 12 goals in 40 games put him on pace to tie his career-high goal total (25) from 2017-18.

POINTS IN BUNCHES

  • Jack Eichel has recorded 15 multi-point games this season, tying for ninth-most in the NHL entering play Monday.
  • Prior to Monday’s games, his six multi-goal games ranked second in the league and his eight multi-assist games tied for fifth-most.
  • Eichel has already recorded at least three points seven times this season, topping his previous career-high total (6) set in the 2016-17 season. Only Connor McDavid (9) and Leon Draisaitl (8) had more games with at least three points this season entering play Monday.
  • Eichel’s three games with at least four points this season tied for the league lead before Monday’s games. Since he entered the league in 2015-16, only seven players had totaled at least four points more times than Eichel’s eight: Nikita Kucherov (15), Patrick Kane (11), Connor McDavid (10), Johnny Gaudreau (9), Brad Marchand (9), Alex Ovechkin (9) and Steven Stamkos (9).

SABRES AMONG LEAGUE-LEADERS (Sabres’ league rankings before 12/30 games)

  • Eichel: 18 EVG (2nd), 24 G (T-3rd), 36 EVP (T-3rd), 52 PTS (7th), 4 GWG (T-9th)
  • Hutton: 2 SO (T-5th)
  • Olofsson: 9 PPG (T-3rd)
  • Ristolainen: 119 hits (T-9th)

SABRES REAL-TIME STATS LEADERS
Hits: Ristolainen (119), Girgensons (61), McCabe (59)
Blocked Shots: McCabe (59), Ristolainen (47), Jokiharju (36)
Shots: Eichel (139), Skinner (128), Olofsson (97)

SABRES’ RECORD IN 10 GAME SEGMENTS [W-L-OTL (PTS), GF/GA, PP, PK]
1-10: 8-1-1 (17), 38/24, 12/39, 23/30
11-20: 2-6-2 (6), 21/35, 2/26, 21/29
21-30: 3-4-3 (8), 34/34, 4/33, 23/32
31-40: 4-5-1 (9), 24/32, 4/23, 23/30

OVERTIME RESULTS (3-6; 123-134 all-time)
Oct. 7 at CBJ: L, 4-3 (GWG-Texier, 2:08)
Oct. 9 vs. MTL: W, 5-4 (GWG-Johansson, 1:30)
Oct. 22 vs. SJS: W, 4-3 (GWG-Eichel, 3:13)
Nov. 14 vs. CAR: L, 5-4 (GWG-Hamilton, 2:28)
Nov. 27 vs. CGY: L, 3-2 (GWG-Lindholm, 1:17)
Nov. 30 at TOR: L, 2-1 (GWG-Tavares, 1:45)
Dec. 7 at VAN: L, 6-5 (GWG-Miller, 3:21)
Dec. 8 at EDM: W, 3-2 (GWG-Miller, 1:13)
Dec. 14 at NYI: L, 3-2 (GWG-Beauvillier, 3:04)

SHOOTOUT RESULTS (1-1; 76-70 all-time)
Oct. 11 vs. FLA: W, 3-2 (GDG-Eichel)
Oct. 28 vs. ARI: L, 3-2 (GDG-Schmaltz)

MILESTONES APPROACHING (Player … Needs … Milestone)
Games Played
Conor Sheary … 5 games … 300 career games played
Goals
Sam Reinhart … 1 goal … 100 career goals
Kyle Okposo … 9 goals … 200 career goals
Assists
Marco Scandella … 9 assists … 100 career assists
Points
Kyle Okposo … 5 points … 500 career points
Zach Bogosian … 8 points … 200 career points

RECENT MILESTONES
Jeff Skinner … 700th NHL game … 12/27 vs. BOS

Game Preview: 12/29/19 at Boston

GAME-DAY RESOURCES

Game Notes NHL Stats Press Clips

LAST GAME
Friday, December 27
Boston 3 at Buffalo 0
Goals: N/A
Goalie: Ullmark (22 saves/24 shots); 1 ENG
PP: 0/2; PK: 3/4; Shots: Buffalo 26 – Boston 25

CURRENT INJURIES – (Man Games Lost: 178)
Player (injury, first game missed) – total games missed
Matt Hunwick (neck, Oct. 3; injured reserve) – 39 games
Vladimir Sobotka (knee, Nov. 9; injured reserve) – 23 games
Tage Thompson (upper body, Nov. 19; injured reserve) – 19 games
Johan Larsson (lower body, Dec. 21) – 3 games
Marco Scandella (illness, Dec. 27) – 1 game
Jeff Skinner (upper body, Dec. 29) – 0 games

TRANSACTIONS IN PAST 7 DAYS
12/24: Assigned F Curtis Lazar to Rochester (AHL)
12/27: Recalled F Curtis Lazar from Rochester (AHL)

UPCOMING GAMES
Tuesday, Dec. 31: Tampa Bay at Buffalo, 7 p.m.
Thursday, Jan. 2: Edmonton at Buffalo, 7 p.m.
Saturday, Jan. 4: Florida at Buffalo, 7 p.m.
Thursday, Jan. 9: Buffalo at St. Louis, 8 p.m.
Saturday, Jan. 11: Vancouver at Buffalo, 1 p.m.

TONIGHT’S GAME
SABRES at BRUINS

  • This is the third of four meetings between the Sabres and Bruins this season.
  • Last meeting: Boston defeated Buffalo 3-0 in Buffalo on Dec. 27
  • Next meeting: Friday, March 13 in Buffalo
  • The Sabres are 4-5-1 in their last 10 games vs. the Bruins; 5-4-1 on the road.
  • This is the 296th game all-time between Buffalo and Boston; Buffalo has a 125-125-45 series record.
  • The Sabres are 51-74-21 on the road against the Bruins all-time.

THIS DATE IN SABRES HISTORY

  • The Sabres are 8-11-5 all-time on December 29.
  • December 29, 1983: Real Cloutier scores three times in a span of 5:21 in the second period to kick-start the Sabres’ offense in an 8-5 win vs. Quebec.
  • December 29, 2017: Jake McCabe records an assist in his 200th NHL game, a 4-3 overtime win at New Jersey.
  • December 29, 2018: Carter Hutton makes 39 saves and Marco Scandella records two points (1+1), but the Sabres fall to the Bruins 3-2 in overtime.

THINGS YOU SHOULD KNOW

  • The road team has won seven of the last 10 games between these teams.
  • Jack Eichel has recorded 11 points (5+6) in seven career road games against the Bruins.
  • Rasmus Dahlin has totaled three assists in three career visits to Boston.
  • Marcus Johansson has posted eight points (4+4) in his last nine road games in Boston, including a point in each of his last four games at TD Garden as a member of the visiting team (2+2). The current streak began on Jan. 5, 2016, when he scored a goal against the Bruins as a member of the Washington Capitals.
  • Sam Reinhart has tallied five assists in his five road games against the Bruins since the beginning of the 2017-18 season.
  • Rasmus Ristolainen has scored in three of his last four visits to TD Garden, including each of his last two.
  • Victor Olofsson has recorded 24 points (10+14) in his last 24 games, including two-point performances in five of the team’s last 12 games. He has failed to record a point in just five of those 24 games and leads all NHL rookies in goals (16) and points (34) this season.

HOME-AND-HOME

  • Tonight’s game wraps up Buffalo’s fourth of five home-and-home sets this season after a 3-0 Bruins win on Friday in Buffalo.
  • The Sabres have played in 166 previous home-and-home series in franchise history, going 94-49-23 (.636) in the home games and 57-79-30 (.434) in the road games in previous series.
  • The team is 72-65-29 (.521) all-time in the first game of these previous series and 79-63-24 (.548) in the second.
  • Buffalo’s points breakdown in these previous series is as follows: four points (32), three points (25), two points (67), one point (17), zero points (25).
  • This season, the Sabres have swept San Jose in a home-and-home series on Oct. 19 and 22 and were swept by the Lightning on Nov. 8 and 9 in Stockholm, Sweden. They earned three points on Dec. 29 and 30 against Toronto. They will face the Carolina Hurricanes in their final home-and-home of the season on March 15 and 17.

JACK ATTACK

  • Entering play Saturday, Jack Eichel’s 16 points since the beginning of December tied for third-most among all NHL players and his eight goals during that span tied for fifth-most in the league.
  • With his 50th point of the season on Dec. 17 at Toronto, Eichel became the first Sabre to reach 50 points in 35 or fewer games since 1992-93 (Pat LaFontaine and Alexander Mogilny). He joins Rick Martin as the only other player in franchise history to record at least 20 goals and 50 points in each of his first five NHL seasons.
  • Eichel hasn’t been held without a point in three consecutive appearances since early November. In his 22 games played since then, he has totaled 34 points (17+17), including a stretch of 18 straight games (Nov. 16 to Dec. 21) that tied Gilbert Perreault (Oct. 24 to Dec. 4, 1971) for the most consecutive games played with a point in franchise history.
  • The streak was the NHL’s fifth-longest personal point streak in the last decade, trailing only Taylor Hall (26 in 2017-18), Patrick Kane (26 in 2015-16), Sidney Crosby (25 in 2010-11) and Patrick Kane (20 in 2018-19).

5-ON-5 GOALS

  • According to NaturalStatTrick.com, the Sabres entered play Saturday with three players among the league’s leaders in 5-on-5 goals: Jack Eichel (13, T-5th), Jeff Skinner (11, T-16th), Sam Reinhart (10, T-26th).
  • Only 38 NHL players had at least 10 goals during 5-on-5 play entering play Saturday. Buffalo joined the Edmonton Oilers (Draisaitl, Kassian, McDavid) as one of two teams with three players among those 38.

SETTING THE PACE

  • With 24 goals in 38 games so far this season, Jack Eichel is on pace to shatter his previous best goal total (28), set in the 2018-19 season.
  • Eichel’s output through 39 team games currently has him on pace to finish the season with 51 goals and 109 points, which would be the highest goal and point totals by a Sabre since Pat LaFontaine (53+95) and Alexander Mogilny (76+51) in 1992-93.
  • LaFontaine (83 in 1992-93) and Mogilny (78 in 1992-93) are the only Sabres ever to have recorded more even-strength points in a season than the 75 Eichel is currently on pace for.
  • Victor Olofsson’s goal and point totals currently have him on pace for the best offensive season by a Sabres rookie in decades. If he maintains his current pace, he would finish the season with the most goals by a Sabres rookie (34) since Ray Sheppard’s 38 in 1987-88 and the third-most points ever recorded by a Sabres rookie (71), trailing only Rick Martin (74 in 1971-72) and Gilbert Perreault (72 on 1970-71).
  • Sam Reinhart’s 12 goals in 39 games put him on pace to tie his career-high goal total (25) from 2017-18.

POINTS IN BUNCHES

  • Jack Eichel has recorded 15 multi-point games this season, tying for sixth-most in the NHL entering play Saturday.
  • Prior to Saturday’s games, his six multi-goal games tied to lead the league and his eight multi-assist games tied for third-most.
  • Eichel has already recorded at least three points seven times this season, topping his previous career-high total (6) set in the 2016-17 season. Only Connor McDavid (9) and Leon Draisaitl (8) had more games with at least three points this season entering play Saturday.
  • Eichel’s three games with at least four points this season tied for the league lead before Saturday’s games. Since he entered the league in 2015-16, only seven players had totaled at least four points more times than Eichel’s eight: Nikita Kucherov (15), Patrick Kane (11), Connor McDavid (10), Johnny Gaudreau (9), Brad Marchand (9), Alex Ovechkin (9) and Steven Stamkos (9).

ONE BUFFALO

  • The Sabres and the Buffalo Bills are playing on the same day for the fifth time this season after doing so three times last season.
  • The teams have previously played on the same date 224 times, with both teams winning their respective games on 50 of those days.
  • The Sabres are 121-69-34 when playing on a Bills game day and the Bills enter this game 95-127-2 on those dates.
  • The last time the Sabres and Bills both won on the same date was Nov. 24, 2019.

SABRES AMONG LEAGUE-LEADERS (Sabres’ league rankings before 12/28 games)

  • Eichel: 18 EVG (T-1st), 24 G (T-2nd), 35 EVP (T-3rd), 51 PTS (6th), 4 GWG (T-8th), 27 A (T-10th)
  • Hutton: 2 SO (T-5th)
  • Olofsson: 9 PPG (T-3rd)
  • Ristolainen: 116 hits (T-8th)

SABRES REAL-TIME STATS LEADERS
Hits: Ristolainen (116), Girgensons (58), McCabe (58)
Blocked Shots: McCabe (59), Ristolainen (46), Jokiharju/Scandella (34)
Shots: Eichel (139), Skinner (128), Olofsson (97)

SABRES’ RECORD IN 10 GAME SEGMENTS [W-L-OTL (PTS), GF/GA, PP, PK]
1-10: 8-1-1 (17), 38/24, 12/39, 23/30
11-20: 2-6-2 (6), 21/35, 2/26, 21/29
21-30: 3-4-3 (8), 34/34, 4/33, 23/32
31-40: 4-4-1 (9), 22/29, 4/20, 19/24

OVERTIME RESULTS (3-6; 123-134 all-time)
Oct. 7 at CBJ: L, 4-3 (GWG-Texier, 2:08)
Oct. 9 vs. MTL: W, 5-4 (GWG-Johansson, 1:30)
Oct. 22 vs. SJS: W, 4-3 (GWG-Eichel, 3:13)
Nov. 14 vs. CAR: L, 5-4 (GWG-Hamilton, 2:28)
Nov. 27 vs. CGY: L, 3-2 (GWG-Lindholm, 1:17)
Nov. 30 at TOR: L, 2-1 (GWG-Tavares, 1:45)
Dec. 7 at VAN: L, 6-5 (GWG-Miller, 3:21)
Dec. 8 at EDM: W, 3-2 (GWG-Miller, 1:13)
Dec. 14 at NYI: L, 3-2 (GWG-Beauvillier, 3:04)

SHOOTOUT RESULTS (1-1; 76-70 all-time)
Oct. 11 vs. FLA: W, 3-2 (GDG-Eichel)
Oct. 28 vs. ARI: L, 3-2 (GDG-Schmaltz)

MILESTONES APPROACHING (Player … Needs … Milestone)
Games Played
Conor Sheary … 6 games … 300 career games played
Goals
Sam Reinhart … 1 goal … 100 career goals
Kyle Okposo … 9 goals … 200 career goals
Assists
Marco Scandella … 9 assists … 100 career assists
Points
Kyle Okposo … 5 points … 500 career points
Zach Bogosian … 8 points … 200 career points 

RECENT MILESTONES
Jeff Skinner … 700th NHL game … 12/27 vs. BOS