Tag Archives: Philadelphia Flyers

Post-Game Report: 11/21 vs. Philadelphia

Final Score

1st 2nd 3rd OT SO Final SOG
Flyers
(9-10-2)
0 2 0 2 25
Sabres
(14-6-2)
4 0 1 5 21

Game Summary

Event Summary

Top Notes

  • Buffalo now has its first seven-game winning streak since the team won its first 10 games of the 2006-07 season.
  • With an 8-2-0 record in their last 10 games, the Sabres have eight wins in a 10-game stretch for the first time since the last 10 games of the 2010-11 season.
  • The Sabres are 7-2-1 through 10 home games, their best 10-game start to the home schedule since their identical 7-2-1 start at home in 2009-10.
  • Carter Hutton extended his win streak to a career-best six games. In those games, he has posted .933 save percentage and a 1.99 goals-against average.
  • With his goal tonight, Jeff Skinner now has nine points (5+4) in his last six home games.
  • Kyle Okposo’s assist on Tage Thompson’s goal gives him six points (1+5) in his last six games. Okposo now has a point in each of his last three home contests.
  • Evan Rodrigues’ goal tonight was his third career power-play tally. With two points tonight (1+1), he now has four points (1+3) in his last four games.
  • Rasmus Dahlin’s assist on Rodrigues’ goal gives him six points (1+5) in his last six games.
  • With a goal and an assist tonight, Sam Reinhart now has 10 points (2+8) in his last nine games.

Tonight’s Goaltenders

Tonight’s Stats
Team Goaltender Decision SV% GAA
Flyers Lyon
Pickard
L
ND
.667
1.000
12.00
0.00
Sabres Hutton W .920 2.00
Updated Season Stats
Team Goaltender Record SV% GAA
Flyers Lyon
Pickard
0-1-0
3-1-2
.667
.858
12.00
4.13
Sabres Hutton 10-6-1 .917 2.57

Post-Game Audio

Sabres head coach Phil Housley

Sabres forward Evan Rodrigues

Sabres forward Jack Eichel

Flyers head coach Dave Hakstol

Flyers forward Scott Laughton

Flyers forward Claude Giroux

Flyers defenseman Christian Folin

 

Game Preview: 11/21/18 vs. Philadelphia

GAME-DAY RESOURCES

Game Notes NHL Stats Press Clips

LAST GAME
Monday, November 19
Buffalo 5 at Pittsburgh 4 (OT)
Goals: Thompson, Bogosian, Nelson, Mittelstadt, Eichel
Goalie: Hutton (36 saves/40 shots)
PP: 0/3; PK: 3/3; Shots: Buffalo 40 – Pittsburgh 40

CURRENT INJURIES – (Man Games Lost: 71)
Player (injury, first game missed) – total games missed
Matt Hunwick (neck, Oct. 4; injured reserve) – 21 games
Scott Wilson (ankle, Oct. 4; injured reserve) – 21 games
Patrik Berglund (upper body, Nov. 21; injured reserve) – 0 games
Marco Scandella (lower body, Nov. 21) – 0 games

TRANSACTIONS IN PAST 7 DAYS
11/21:
Recalled D Lawrence Pilut; Placed F Patrik Berglund on IR
UPCOMING GAMES
Friday, Nov. 23: Montreal at Buffalo, 4 p.m.
Saturday, Nov. 24: Buffalo at Detroit, 7 p.m.
Tuesday, Nov. 27: San Jose at Buffalo, 7 p.m.
Thursday, Nov. 29: Buffalo at Tampa Bay, 7:30 p.m.
Friday, Nov. 30: Buffalo at Florida, 7 p.m.

TONIGHT’S GAME
FLYERS AT SABRES

  • This is the first of three meetings between the Sabres and Flyers this season.
  • Last meeting: Philadelphia defeated Buffalo 4-1 in Philadelphia on Jan. 7
  • Next meeting: Saturday, Dec. 8 in Buffalo
  • The Sabres are 5-4-1 in their last 10 games vs. the Flyers; 5-4-1 at home
  • This is the 177th game all-time between Buffalo and Philadelphia; Buffalo has a 68-84-24 series record.
  • The Sabres are 43-33-10 at home against the Flyers all-time.

THIS DAY IN SABRES HISTORY

  • The Sabres are 8-13-1 all-time on November 21.
  • November 21, 1981: Jim Schoenfeld and Yvon Lambert each score two goals and Don Edwards makes 28 saves in a 7-1 Sabres victory at Los Angeles.
  • November 21, 2003: Mika Noronen stops 35 Carolina shots to earn his third career shutout in a 5-0 win against the Hurricanes.

THINGS YOU SHOULD KNOW

  • The Sabres are 7-2-1 in their last 10 games. It’s Buffalo’s best 10-game stretch since the team posted a 7-1-2 record from March 10 to 30, 2012.
  • Jack Eichel has recorded two points in each of his last two games and entered play Tuesday tied for the league lead with nine multi-point games this season. Eichel’s nine multi-point games through 21 games leave him just nine shy of his career-high 18 in a season.
  • Carter Hutton is 3-0-0 in his career against the Flyers with a .921 save percentage and a 1.95 goals-against average.
  • Jack Eichel has seven points (5+2) in his last seven games against Philadelphia, including six (5+1) in four home games.
  • Conor Sheary has recorded at least a point in each of his last three games against the Flyers, totaling four points (3+1) in those games.
  • Linus Ullmark recorded his first career win against the Flyers on Oct. 30, 2015 in Buffalo after stopping 27 of 28 Philadelphia shots.

GOING STREAKING

  • The Sabres enter tonight’s game on their first six-game winning streak in a single season since Dec. 27, 2009 to Jan. 8, 2010. It is the longest streak in the NHL this season.
  • A win today would give Buffalo its first seven-game winning streak since the team won its first 10 games of the 2006-07 season.
  • With a win or overtime loss tonight, the Sabres would have points in seven straight games for the first time since they had points in nine straight games (7-0-2) from March 10 to 27, 2012.

HOME COOKING

  • Buffalo enters tonight’s game with a 6-2-1 (.722) record at home this season, putting the team on pace for its best home record since the 1982-83 season (25-7-8, .725). Entering play Tuesday, that record ranked as the fifth-best home record in the NHL.
  • With 13 points through eight home games, the team has already clinched its best 10-game start to the home schedule since they began the 2009-10 season with a 7-2-1 record in their first 10 home games.
  • The Sabres have gone 4-0-1 their last five home games. A point tonight would give the Sabres points in six consecutive home games for the first time since they earned points in seven straight from Jan. 7 to Feb. 7, 2017 (6-0-1).

SCORING EARLY IS GREAT…

  • The Sabres are 8-0-2 when scoring first so far this season. Entering play Tuesday, they were one of four teams who have earned at least a point in every game in which they’ve opened the scoring in 2018-19.
    • Their current win percentage when scoring first (.800) is the team’s best since the 2005-06 season (36-5-4, .800).
  • Buffalo is 7-0-2 when leading after the first period. Entering play Tuesday, they were one of five teams who have earned at least a point in every game in which they’ve led after 20 minutes in 2018-19.
    • Their current win percentage when leading after one (.778) is the team’s best since the 2009-10 season (21-4-2, .778).

…BUT SCORING LATE IS NICE TOO

  • The Sabres are 5-6-1 when trailing after two periods. Their five wins when trailing after 40 minutes ranked as the second-most in the league entering play Tuesday.
  • Buffalo’s current win percentage when trailing after two periods is .417. The franchise record for best win percentage when trailing after two periods is currently the team’s .286 mark (7-19-0) from the 1983-84 season.

NOT TOO CLOSE FOR COMFORT
The Sabres are 7-0-2 in one-goal games so far this season. The team last won more than half of its one-goal games in a season in 2011-12 (21-9-11). The team’s current .777 winning percentage in one-goal games would top the franchise record of .714 (10-4-0) set in the 1977-78 season.

THA CARTER V
Carter Hutton is 5-0-0 with a .936 save percentage and a 1.99 goals-against average in his last five games. The five-game winning streak ties his longest career winning streak, matching his five-game streak from March 21, 2014 at Calgary to April 13, 2014 at Minnesota.

KILLING IT

  • Buffalo is 18-for-19 on the penalty kill in the team’s last eight games dating back to Nov. 3 vs. Ottawa. During this eight-game stretch, the Sabres’ goaltenders have turned aside 23 shots on the power play and the team has killed off 30:38 of power-play time.
    • This stretch has improved the team to 33-for-36 (91.7%) in their last 13 games dating back to Oct. 21 at Anaheim, the third-best mark in the NHL during that span before Tuesday’s games.
  • On the season, the Sabres have killed off 51 of the team’s 62 shorthanded situations (82.3%), ranking them sixth in the league entering play Tuesday.

WHAT’S THE SKINNY?

  • With 14 goals through Buffalo’s first 21 games, Jeff Skinner entered play Tuesday trailing only David Pastrnak (17 goals) and Alex Ovechkin (15 goals) for most in the NHL this season.
  • With his 10th goal in the team’s 16th game of the season on Nov. 8 at Montreal, Skinner reached the 10-goal mark quicker than any Sabres player since Thomas Vanek (10 games) in 2012-13.

WINNING WAYS
Sam Reinhart has recorded eight points (1+7) in his last eight games, including three two-point games during that stretch. The Sabres are 10-0-0 this season when Reinhart records at least one point and 24-2-3 (.879) in his career when he records at least two.

SABRES AMONG LEAGUE-LEADERS (Sabres’ league rankings before 11/20 games)

  • Buffalo Sabres: 13 W (4th), 28 PTS (4th), 82.3 PK% (6th), 681 S (9th)
  • Eichel: 86 S (4th), 19 EVP (T-4th), 19 A (T-5th), 1 OTG (T-8th)
  • Hutton: 9 W (T-2nd), 442 SV (7th)
  • Ristolainen: 72 hits (3rd), 1 OTG (T-8th), 25:21 TOI/GP (9th)
  • Skinner: 11 EVG (T-1st), 14 G (T-3rd), plus-12 (T-3rd)
  • Ullmark: 1 SO (T-7th)

BUF-PHI CONNECTIONS
Nathan Beaulieu:

  • Played with Flyers F Dale Weise in Montreal.

Patrik Berglund:

  • Played with Flyers G Brian Elliott and F Jori Lehtera in St. Louis.

Jason Botterill:

  • Played with Flyers assistant coach Gord Murphy in Atlanta.

Jack Eichel:

  • Played for Team North America with Flyers F Sean Couturier at the 2016 World Cup of Hockey.

Phil Housley:

  • Played with Flyers assistant coach Ian Laperriere in St. Louis.
  • Coached Flyers D Shayne Gostisbehere to a gold medal at the 2013 IIHF World Junior Championship.

Carter Hutton:

  • Played with Flyers G Brian Elliott in St. Louis.

Jake McCabe:

  • Won a gold medal for the United States with Flyers D Shayne Gostisbehere at the 2013 IIHF World Junior Championship.

Kyle Okposo:

  • Played for the Islanders with Flyers D Andrew MacDonald.
  • Played for Team USA with Flyers F James van Riemsdyk at the 2007 and 2008 IIHF World Junior Championships. The duo won a bronze medal together in 2007.

Davis Payne:

  • Was an assistant coach in Los Angeles when Flyers General Manager Ron Hextall was the Kings’ assistant general manager and Flyers goaltending coach Kim Dillabaugh was the goaltending development coach.
  • Was the Blues’ head coach when Flyers G Brian Elliott was playing in St. Louis.

Jason Pominville:

  • Played with Flyers D Christian Folin in Minnesota.

Sam Reinhart:

  • Won a gold medal for Canada with Flyers G Calvin Pickard at the 2016 IIHF World Championship.

Rasmus Ristolainen:

  • Represented Finland with Flyers F Jori Lehtera at the 2016 World Cup of Hockey.

Marco Scandella:

  • Played with Flyers D Christian Folin in Minnesota.

Jeff Skinner:

  • Won a silver medal for Team Canada with Flyers F Sean Couturier, F Claude Giroux, G Calvin Pickard and F Wayne Simmonds at the 2017 IIHF World Championship. Skinner, Giroux and Simmonds previously played together at the 2013 IIHF World Championship.

Vladimir Sobotka:

  • Played with Flyers G Brian Elliott and F Jori Lehtera in St. Louis.
  • Has represented the Czech Republic with Flyers F Jakub Voracek on three separate occasions: at the 2007 IIHF World Junior Championship, at the 2016 World Cup of Hockey and 2017 IIHF World Championship.
  • Played for the Czech Republic National Team with Flyers D Radko Gudas at the 2017 IIHF World Championship.

SABRES REAL-TIME STATS LEADERS
Hits: Ristolainen (72), McCabe (34), Girgensons (31)
Blocked Shots: McCabe (36), Ristolainen (34), Bogosian (29)
Shots: Eichel (86), Skinner (69), Okposo/Pominville (49)

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

OVERTIME RESULTS (2-2; 115-123 all-time)
Oct. 27 at CBJ: L, 5-4 (GWG-Panarin, 0:31)
Oct. 30 vs. CGY: L, 2-1 (GWG-Gaudreau, 2:40)
Nov. 8 at MTL: W, 6-5 (GWG-Ristolainen, 1:38)
Nov. 19 at PIT: W, 5-4 (GWG-Eichel, 0:45)

SHOOTOUT RESULTS (2-0; 72-66 all-time)
Nov. 10 vs. VAN: W, 4-3 (GDG-Mittelstadt)
Nov. 16 at WPG: W, 2-1 (GDG-Sheary)

MILESTONES APPROACHING (Player … Needs … Milestone)
Games Played
Jason Pominville … 1 game … 682 games played with Sabres (sole possession, 9th in franchise history)
Nathan Beaulieu … 4 games … 300 career games played
Evan Rodrigues … 5 games … 100 career games played
Remi Elie … 6 games … 100 career games played
Goals
Jason Pominville … 1 goal … 211 goals with Sabres (T-11th in franchise history)
Assists
Kyle Okposo … 7 assists … 300 career assists
Points
Jason Pominville … 4 points … 511 points with Sabres (T-8th in franchise history)

RECENT MILESTONES
Jeff Skinner … 400th NHL point … Nov. 16 at WPG
Jeff Skinner … 600th NHL game … Nov. 19 at PIT
Jason Pominville … 681st game with Sabres (T-9th in franchise history) … Nov. 19 at PIT
Jack Eichel … 200th NHL point … Nov. 19 at PIT

Game Preview: 1/7/18 at PHI

GAME-DAY RESOURCES

Game Notes NHL Stats Press Clips

LAST GAME
Friday, January 5
Buffalo 3 at Winnipeg 4
Goals: Scandella, Larsson, Wilson
Goalie: Johnson (25 saves/29 shots)
PP: 0/5; PK: 2/4; Shots: Buffalo 29 – Winnipeg 29

CURRENT INJURIES – (Man Games Lost: 156)
Player (injury, first game missed) – total games missed
Victor Antipin (illness, Dec. 29) – 4 games

TRANSACTIONS IN PAST 7 DAYS
1/5: Activated D Taylor Fedun from IR; Assigned Fedun to Rochester (AHL)

UPCOMING GAMES
Tuesday, Jan. 9: Winnipeg at Buffalo, 7 p.m.
Thursday, Jan. 11: Columbus at Buffalo, 7 p.m.
Thursday, Jan. 18: Buffalo at NY Rangers, 7:30 p.m.
Saturday, Jan. 20: Dallas at Buffalo, 1 p.m.
Monday, Jan. 22: Buffalo at Calgary, 9 p.m.

TODAY’S GAME

SABRES at FLYERS

  • This is the third and final meeting between the Sabres and Flyers this season.
  • Last meeting: Buffalo defeated Philadelphia 4-2 in Buffalo on Dec. 22
  • The Sabres are 5-4-1 in their last 10 games vs. the Flyers; 2-7-1 on the road.
  • This is the 176th game all-time between Buffalo and Philadelphia; Buffalo has a 68-83-24 series record.
  • The Sabres are 25-50-14 on the road against the Flyers all-time.

THIS DATE IN SABRES HISTORY

  • The Sabres are 9-5-6 all-time on January 7.
  • January 7, 1971: Phil Goyette picks up five points (1+4) in a 7-4 win against the Detroit Red Wings at the Aud.
  • January 7, 1989: The Sabres earn the 700th win in franchise history, a 6-1 victory at Toronto.
  • January 7, 2012: Jason Pominville appears in his 500th NHL game as the Sabres fall 2-1 to the Jets in overtime.

THINGS YOU SHOULD KNOW

  • Jack Eichel has totaled 11 points (7+4) in his last nine games. Since beginning that stretch on Dec. 15, Eichel ranked in the top five in the league in goals (T-1st, 7), even-strength goals (T-1st, 6) and even-strength points (T-5th, 10) entering play Saturday.
  • Rasmus Ristolainen has five points (2+3) in his last four games despite getting a game misconduct after just 5:43 of ice time on Thursday at Minnesota.
  • Jason Pominville has three assists in his last two games.
  • Marco Scandella has recorded a point in each of his last two games (1+1) and is seeking his first three-game point streak since March 2017.

ON THE ROAD AGAIN
Today’s game is the final of seven consecutive games away from KeyBank Center for the Sabres. This stretch is the fourth time the team has ever played away from home seven times in a row, the longest such stretch in franchise history, and the first time since January 2012. The team’s next game in Buffalo will take place on Jan. 9 vs. Winnipeg.

I LIKE EICH

  • Jack Eichel is currently on pace to shatter his personal bests in goals (24), assists (33) and points (57) on the strength of improved production at even strength (T-10th in NHL in ES goals, T-13th in ES points).
  • Eichel’s 14 even-strength goals through 41 games match his total from last season (61 games) and are just two shy of his career-best total from 2015-16 (81 games).
  • Eichel’s 29 even-strength points through 41 games are four shy of his total from last season (61 games) and are just six shy of 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 41 15 20 35 14 15 29
2017-18 (Pace) 82 30 40 70 28 30 58

 

SETTING THEM UP AND KNOCKING THEM DOWN

  • Of Jack Eichel’s 35 points so far this season, 22 have been goals or primary assists recorded during 5-on-5 play (excludes empty-net goals).
  • Through 41 games, Eichel’s 22 primary points (11+11) during 5-on-5 play have already surpassed his 61-game total from last season (11+10) and are just two shy of his total from his 81-game rookie season (12+12).

2017-18 Primary Points Leaders at 5-on-5 (Before 1/6 games)

Player Team Goals Primary Assists Primary Points
Nikita Kucherov TBL 19 6 25
Nathan MacKinnon COL 10 14 24
Patrick Kane CHI 12 11 23
John Tavares NYI 12 10 22
Jack Eichel BUF 11 11 22
Jakub Voracek PHI 6 16 22

*All primary point stats via NaturalStatTrick.com

SABRES AMONG LEAGUE-LEADERS (Sabres’ league rankings before 1/6 games)

  • Eichel: 14 EVG (T-10th)
  • Kane: 3 SHG (T-2nd), 3 SHP (T-2nd), 168 S (4th)
  • O’Reilly: 595 FOW (1st), 61.0% FO% (1st), 976 FO (2nd)
  • Ristolainen: 26:06 TOI/GP (5th)

SABRES REAL-TIME STATS LEADERS
Hits: McCabe (91) Ristolainen (91), Kane (86)
Blocked Shots: Scandella (65), McCabe (62), Ristolainen (53)
Shots: Kane (168), Eichel (138), O’Reilly (100)

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: 3-3-4 (9), 22/27, 3/22, 21/26
41-50: 0-2-0 (0), 5/10, 0/8, 4/7

OVERTIME RESULTS (2-8; 110-119 all-time)
Oct. 17 at VGK: L, 5-4 (GWG-Perron)
Oct. 21 at BOS: W, 5-4 (GWG-O’Reilly)
Nov. 11 at MTL: L, 2-1 (GWG-Pacioretty)
Nov. 14 at PIT: L, 5-4 (GWG-Sheary)
Dec. 8 at CHI: L, 3-2 (GWG-Forsling)
Dec. 10 at STL: L, 3-2 (GWG-Tarasenko)
Dec. 15 vs. CAR: L, 5-4 (GWG-Slavin)
Dec. 27 at NYI: L, 3-2 (GWG-Barzal)
Dec. 29 at NJD: W, 4-3 (GWG-Ristolainen)
Jan. 1 vs. NYR: L, 3-2 (GWG-Miller)

SHOOTOUT RESULTS (0-1; 69-65 all-time)
Oct. 5 vs. MTL: L, 3-2 (GDG-Drouin)

MILESTONES APPROACHING (Player … Needs … Milestone)
Wins
Buffalo Sabres … 2 home wins … 1,000 regular-season home wins
Games Played
Robin Lehner … 3 games … 200 career games played
Jacob Josefson … 7 games … 300 career games played
Assists
Rasmus Ristolainen … 3 assists … 100 career assists

RECENT MILESTONES
Marco Scandella … 100th NHL point … Jan. 4 at Minnesotaa

Post-Game Report: 12/22 vs. Philadelphia

Final Score

1st 2nd 3rd OT SO Final SOG
Flyers
(15-13-7)
0 0 2 2 35
Sabres
(9-19-7)
0 0 4 4 37

Game Summary

Event Summary

 

Top Notes

  • Buffalo’s four goals in the third period were the team’s highest single-period total since Dec. 13, 2016 vs. Los Angeles.
  • According to the Elias Sports Bureau, Jack Eichel became the first Sabre ever to score two empty-net goals in the same game and the first to record a game-winner on an empty net since Miroslav Satan on Jan. 22, 2004 at Boston.
  • After tonight’s 33-save performance, Robin Lehner has a .935 save percentage and a 1.94 goals-against average in 14 home games this season. Among regular NHL goaltenders (min. 10 GP at home), Lehner now ranks first in the league in both stats at home.
  • Lehner has now stopped 237 of 252 shots (.940) in his last seven games. In those games, he has also stopped 180 of 188 shots faced during 5-on-5 play (.957), which includes two goals allowed with an opponent’s extra attacker on the ice.
  • With two points (1+1) tonight, Ryan O’Reilly now has 16 points (5+11) in 15 career games against the Flyers, including 11 points (3+8) in eight games against Philadelphia as a member of the Sabres.

 

Tonight’s Goaltenders

Tonight’s Stats
Team Goaltender Decision SV% GAA
Flyers Elliott L .943 2.09
Sabres Lehner W .943 2.00

 

Updated Season Stats
Team Goaltender Record SV% GAA
Flyers Elliott 13-8-6 .913 2.65
Sabres Lehner 8-14-4 .915 2.73

 

Post-Game Audio

Sabres head coach Phil Housley

Sabres forward Jack Eichel

Sabres forward Ryan O’Reilly

Sabres goaltender Robin Lehner

Flyers head coach Dave Hakstol

Flyers forward Claude Giroux

Flyers defenseman Travis Sanheim

Flyers defenseman Shayne Gostisbehere

Flyers goaltender Brian Elliott

Game Preview: 12/22/17 vs. PHI

GAME-DAY RESOURCES

Game Notes NHL Stats Press Clips

LAST GAME
Tuesday, December 19
Boston 3 at Buffalo 0
Goals: N/A
Goalie: Lehner (30 saves/31 shots; 2 ENG)
PP: 0/1; PK: 2/2; Shots: Buffalo 36 – Boston 33

CURRENT INJURIES – (Man Games Lost: 146)
Player (injury, first game missed) – total games missed
Taylor Fedun (lower body, Nov. 17; injured reserve) – 17 games

TRANSACTIONS IN PAST 7 DAYS
12/18: Assigned F Hudson Fasching to Rochester (AHL)
12/19: Activated F Jacob Josefson from IR

UPCOMING GAMES
Saturday, Dec. 23: Buffalo at Carolina, 7 p.m.
Wednesday, Dec. 27: Buffalo at NY Islanders, 7 p.m.
Friday, Dec. 29: Buffalo at New Jersey, 7 p.m.
Monday, Jan. 1: NY Rangers at Buffalo, 1 p.m. (at Citi Field in New York)
Thursday, Jan. 4: Buffalo at Minnesota, 8 p.m.

TONIGHT’S GAME
FLYERS at SABRES

  • This is the second of three meetings between the Sabres and Flyers this season.
  • Last meeting: Philadelphia defeated Buffalo 2-1 in Philadelphia on Dec. 14
  • Next meeting: Sunday, Jan. 7 in Philadelphia
  • The Sabres are 4-5-1 in their last 10 games vs. the Flyers; 4-5-1 at home.
  • This is the 175th game all-time between Buffalo and Philadelphia; Buffalo has a 67-83-24 series record.
  • The Sabres are 42-33-10 at home against the Flyers all-time.

THIS DATE IN SABRES HISTORY

  • The Sabres are 6-11-3 all-time on December 22.
  • December 22, 1974: Don Luce scores two shorthanded goals and an even strength goal in 3:49 in a 4-0 win at Washington. Luce also picked up an assist on the other Buffalo goal.
  • December 22, 1977: Rene Robert scores the 2,000th goal in franchise history in a 4-2 win at Chicago.

WHO’S HOT?

  • Robin Lehner has stopped 204 of 217 shots (.940) in his last six games. In those games, he has also stopped 155 of 162 shots faced during 5-on-5 play (.957), which includes one goal allowed with an opponent’s extra attacker on the ice.
  • Jack Eichel scored his first career hat trick and added an assist on Friday vs. Carolina, tying his career high with four points. His third goal of the game came on his 11th shot, setting a new career best. Eichel now has nine points (4+5) in his last eight games.
  • Evander Kane tied his career high with three assists on Friday vs. Carolina and now has eight points (2+6) in his last eight games.
  • Ryan O’Reilly has 14 points (4+10) in 14 career games against the Flyers, including at least a point in each of the last four (1+4).

BACK-TO-BACK
Tonight’s game opens up Buffalo’s ninth of 16 sets of back-to-back games this season, which continues tomorrow night at Carolina. The Sabres are 2-6-0 in the first game of back-to-back sets and 2-4-2 in the second game so far this season. Buffalo’s point breakdown in previous back-to-back sets is: four points (0), three points (0), two points (4), one point (2) and zero points (2).

PROTECT THIS HOUSE
Entering play Thursday, Robin Lehner’s stats in home games ranked him in the top five in the league in save percentage (2nd, .935) and goals-against average (1st, 1.94) among regular goaltenders (min. 300 minutes played at home).

THE KANE EVENT
Since the beginning of the 2016-17 season, Evander Kane has scored 42 goals in 104 games. Entering play Thursday, those 42 goals tied for 22nd in the league during that span and his 34 even-strength goals tied for 11th.

SABRES AMONG LEAGUE-LEADERS (Sabres’ league rankings before 12/21 games)

  • Eichel: 2 SHP (T-10th)
  • Kane: 3 SHG (T-2nd), 3 SHP (T-2nd), 142 S (4th)
  • O’Reilly: 517 FOW (1st), 61.7% FO% (1st), 838 FO (1st), 2 SHP (T-10th)
  • Ristolainen: 26:49 TOI/GP (3rd)

BUF-PHI CONNECTIONS
Victor Antipin:

  • Represented Russia alongside Ivan Provorov at the 2017 World Championship.

Nathan Beaulieu:

  • Played with Dale Weise for the Montreal Canadiens from 2013-2016.

Jack Eichel:

  • Teammates with Shayne Gostisbehere and Sean Couturier for Team North America at the 216 World Cup of Hockey.

Chad Johnson:

  • He and Brian Elliot served as the goaltending tandem for the Calgary Flames during the 2016-17 season.

Jake McCabe:

  • Represented the United States alongside Shayne Gostisbehere at the 2013 World Junior Championship.

Kyle Okposo:

  • Played with Andrew McDonald for the New York Islanders from 2008-2014.

Ryan O’Reilly:

  • Represented Canada alongside Claude Giroux and Wayne Simmonds at the 2013 World Championship.
  • Played with Sean Couturier and Claude Giroux for Team Canada at the 2015 World Championship.
  • Teammates with Claude Giroux for Team Canada at the 2016 World Cup of Hockey.
  • He and Travis Konecny were teammates at the 2017 World Championship for Team Canada.

Benoit Pouliot:

  • Teammates with Radko Gudas for the Tampa Bay Lightning during the 2012-13 season.

Sam Reinhart:

  • Played with Travis Konecny, Scott Laughton and Taylor Leier for Team Canada at the 2014 World Junior Championship

Rasmus Ristolainen:

  • Represented Finland alongside Jori Lehtera at the 2016 World Cup of Hockey.

NHL Draft:

  • Kyle Okposo (7th overall) and Claude Giroux (22nd overall) were both selected in the first round of the 2006 NHL Draft.
  • The first round of the 2011 NHL Draft saw both Nathan Beaulieu (17th overall) and Sean Couturier (8th overall) go off the board.
  • Zemgus Girgensons (14th overall) and Scott Laughton (20th overall) were both taken in the first round of the 2012 NHL Draft.
  • Sam Reinhart (2nd overall) and Travis Sanheim (17th overall) were first-round picks in the 2014 NHL Draft.
  • Jack Eichel (2nd overall), Ivan Provorov (7th overall) and Travis Konecny (24th overall) all both first-round picks in the 2015 NHL Draft.

SABRES REAL-TIME STATS LEADERS
Hits: Ristolainen (75), McCabe (71), Kane (70)
Blocked Shots: McCabe (52), Scandella (52), Ristolainen (48)
Shots: Kane (142), Eichel (112), O’Reilly (85)

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: 1-2-1 (3), 8/12, 1/6, 9/9

OVERTIME RESULTS (1-6; 109-117 all-time)
Oct. 17 at VGK: L, 5-4 (GWG-Perron)
Oct. 21 at BOS: W, 5-4 (GWG-O’Reilly)
Nov. 11 at MTL: L, 2-1 (GWG-Pacioretty)
Nov. 14 at PIT: L, 5-4 (GWG-Sheary)
Dec. 8 at CHI: L, 3-2 (GWG-Forsling)
Dec. 10 at STL: L, 3-2 (GWG-Tarasenko)
Dec. 15 vs. CAR: L, 5-4 (GWG-Slavin)

SHOOTOUT RESULTS (0-1; 69-65 all-time)
Oct. 5 vs. MTL: L, 3-2 (GDG-Drouin)

MILESTONES APPROACHING (Player … Needs … Milestone)
Wins
Buffalo Sabres … 3 home wins … 1,000 regular-season home wins
Games Played
Rasmus Ristolainen … 2 games … 300 career games played
Jake McCabe … 4 games … 200 career games played
Robin Lehner … 8 games … 200 career games played
Assists
Rasmus Ristolainen … 6 assists … 100 career assists
Points
Marco Scandella … 4 points … 100 career points

RECENT MILESTONES
N/A