The Sabres have a big game in Winnipeg

Buffalo tries to win its fourth straight game

Paul Hamilton
November 16, 2018 - 3:01 pm

Photo: Terrence Lee - USA TODAY Sports


Winnipeg, MB (WGR 550) - The Sabres just beat the No. 1 team in the NHL on Tuesday and tonight, they’re in Winnipeg to face the NHL’s fifth-ranked team.

Winnipeg is 8-2-1 in this building, and overall it’s won four of five games. Phil Housley played in Winnipeg and he said, "It’s a great atmosphere. The people are right on top of you. They’re a loud crowd. If you’re not ready for this game you better be because they’re going to try to start fast.”

Buffalo has also won four of five games including three in a row. Part of the reason for this success is the Sabres have killed off all 12 of the penalties they’ve taken in the five games. They've only been scored on shorthanded in just one of their last 10 games. That means they’ve killed 27-of-29 penalties. Buffalo is now ninth in the NHL while shorthanded.

Buffalo will need that stellar penalty killing because they’re facing the league’s top power play. Winnipeg scores at a 34-percent clip with the man advantage. Blake Wheeler leads the league with 13 power play points. Patrik Laine has seven PP goals.

Carter Hutton jumps into the crease for the fourth straight game. He’s 3-0-1 with a 1.76 goals-against and a .937 save percentage. Overall Hutton is 7-6-1 with a 2.64 goals-against and .916 save percentage.

After a good seven game streak of points, Jack Eichel has gone cold, going pointless in three out of four games. Jason Pominville has done the same and he’s now down on a line with Patrik Berglund and Vladimir Sobotka.

Sam Reinhart's up with Eichel and he has seven points in five games.

Jeff Skinner has goals in five out of six games. Skinner has 13 goals and 20 points in his last 14 games.

At 10-6-2, the Sabres are seventh in NHL point percentage. Buffalo has risen from 29th in shots to 12th, averaging 32.2 shots per-game. Carolina is No. 1 at an amazing 41.7 shots per-game.

The healthy scratches will be Evan Rodrigues, Casey Nelson and Remi Elie

Wheeler is the seventh leading scorer in the NHL with three goals and 21 assists for 24 points. Wheeler has points in 11 straight games, scoring two goals and 18 assists for 20 points.

Mark Scheifele has four goals and three assists for seven points in three games.

Patrik Laine has eight goals in his 18 games.

Connor Hellebuyck is 8-5-1 in goal with a 2.72 goals-against and .915 save percentage. Hellebuyck has played six straight games going 4-2-0, but he won’t get the call tonight. Laurent Brossoit plays in only his fourth game, but he’s undefeated so far with a 1.68 goals-against and .957 save percentage.

Join Brian Koziol for the pre-game starting at 7:00 when he’ll be joined by Phil Housley, Jake McCabe and Zemgus Girgensons.

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