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Struggling Sabres Head To Washington To Take on Struggling Capitals

@ 7:00 PM

Last Game:

Washington: Mar 16 at Bruins Loss 4-1

Buffalo: Mar 16 vs. Senators Loss(OT) 4-3

Record:

Washington: 11-15-1

Buffalo: 10-14-4

Points:

Washington: 23

Buffalo: 24

Rank In Conference:

Washington: 14th

Buffalo: 13th

Power Play Ranking:

Washington: 24.4(3rd)

Buffalo: 10.9(30th)

Penalty Kill Ratings:

Washington: 76.5(28th)

Buffalo: 78.6(T-24th)

Goals For:

Washington: 73(16th)

Buffalo: 70(T-19th)

Goals Against:

Washington: 82(23rd)

Buffalo: 86(27th)

Shots For:

Washington: 741(24th)

Buffalo: 818(12th)

Shots Against:

Washington: 865(23rd)

Buffalo: 926(29th)

Blocked Shots:

Washington: 414(15th)

Buffalo: 430(T-6th)

Hits:

Washington: 563(21st)

Buffalo: 631(15th)

Face-Off Percentage:

Washington: 49.9(17th)

Buffalo: 46.3(29th)

Team Leaders:

Goals:

Washington: Ribeiro and Ovechkin(10), Brouwer(9), J. Ward and Fehr(6), Carlson, Perreault, Wolski, and Hendricks(4)

Buffalo: Vanek(14), Hodgson(10), Pominville(9), Ennis(7)

Assists:

Washington: Ribeiro and Backstrom(19), Ovechkin(12), Brouwer, J. Ward, Carlson, and Chimera(8), Fehr and Perreault, and Kundratek(6)

Buffalo: Vanek(16), Hodgson(12), Ennis, Pominville, and Ott(11), Ehrhoff(10)

Points:

Washington: Ribeiro(29), Ovechkin and Backstrom(22), Brouwer(17), J. Ward(14)

Buffalo: Vanek(30), Hodgson(22), Pominville(20), Ennis(18)

Plus/Minus:

Washington: Fehr(+7), Erskine(+6), J. Ward(+4), Perreault(+2)

Buffalo: Ehrhoff(+6), Ott and Hecht(+5), Sulzer and Vanek(+3), Pardy(+2)

Penalty Minutes:

Washington: Hendricks(58), Ribeiro(48), Volpatti(33), Ovechkin(24)

Buffalo: Ott(49), Kaleta and Weber(46), Scott(41), Foligno(23)

Shots:

Washington: Ovechkin(111), Carlson(62), Brouwer(59), Chimera(58)

Buffalo: Vanek(87), Pominville(81), Hodgson(73), Ennis(71)

Blocked Shots:

Washington: Carlson(70), Alzner(48), Erskine(31), Green(25)

Buffalo: Ehrhoff(53), Sekera(51), Regehr(42), Weber(40)

Hits:

Washington: Ovechkin(61), Brouwer(57), Hendricks(52), Volpatti(51)

Buffalo: Ott(121), Weber(69), Foligno(60), Kaleta(48)

Face-Off Wins:

Washington: Backstrom(241), Beagle(171), Ribeiro(135), Hendricks(86)

Buffalo: Hodgson(248), Ott(155), Ennis(112), Hecht(80)

Today Starting Goaltender Matchup:

Washington: Braden Holtby 9-9-0 2.97 GAA .909 SV% 3 SO

Buffalo: Ryan Miller 9-12-4 2.83 GAA .914 SV% 0 SO

Notes:

Last Meeting: Jan 27 Capitals Won 3-2

Season Series: Capitals Lead 1-0-0

All-Time: Sabres Lead 83-42-16

All-Time at WSH: Sabres Lead 39-22-10

Turris leads Senators past Sabres in OT

The Ottawa Senators have played in a handful of close games lately and after two shootout losses, they were finally able to come away with two points Saturday.

Kyle Turris scored twice, including the winner in overtime on the power play, as the Senators defeated the Buffalo Sabres 4-3 at a sold-out First Niagara Center.

Ottawa’s last 11 games have been decided by one goal and the Senators have now gone 5-2-4 in that span. Six of those games have been decided either in overtime or the shootout.

“We don’t like playing 60 minutes,” goaltender Ben Bishop joked. “We like to play a lot longer than that so it’s a big win, a big road win.”

After serving as the backup for the last three games, Bishop stopped 33 shots.

Defenseman Mike Weber and forward Drew Stafford scored to put Buffalo ahead 2-0 after the first period.

The Senators tied it in the second period thanks to forward Patrick Wiercioch’s fourth goal in six games and a goal from defenseman Chris Phillips. Turris scored Ottawa’s third goal of the period to give his team the lead. Wiercioch added an assist on the first Turris goal as well.

With two assists in the game, Senators defenseman Sergei Gonchar extended his point streak to six games. He has eight assists in that span. Turris also assisted on Wiercioch’s goal, giving him four points in his last three games.

Stafford scored again with 7:54 left in the third period to tie the game 3-3.

Defenseman Christian Ehrhoff put the Senators on the game-deciding power play when he was called for interfering with Senators forward Mika Zibanejad with 2:44 left in overtime.

The Senators were patient with the puck with the man advantage in the extra period and after having several shots blocked, Turris accepted a pass from captain Daniel Alfredsson and ripped a one-timer from in close over Ryan Miller’s blocker.

“It was a great pass by [Alfredsson]. We were working the 4-on-3 pretty well there,” Turris said. “[Alfredsson] and [Gonchar] had a couple of good shots. I think [Guillaume Latendresse] hit the post. We were buzzing around their net and I was just lucky to put one in.”

http://www.nhl.com/ice/recap.htm?id=2012020407&navid=sb:recap

Criticized top line responds for Bruins in big victory

In the days leading up to a Saturday matinee against the Washington Capitals, Boston Bruins coach Claude Julien had directed several critical words at his mostly silent trio of Milan Lucic, Nathan Horton and David Krejci.

Those three players, widely considered to be the No. 1 line on Boston’s depth chart, decided to finally make some noise on the ice against the team that shut them down in the playoffs last season.

Lucic set up first-period goals by Horton and Krejci and the three forwards combined for nine points as Boston bested Washington, 4-1, at TD Garden in a game that earned some level of revenge for a Game 7 playoff loss here last season and the Capitals’ comeback victory from earlier this month in Washington.

“Obviously, we haven’t scored for a while, but I think our line played a lot better tonight,” Horton said. “Like Claude said, when you’re thinking, you’re up and you’re making plays, you make more mistakes when you do that. Just get the puck deep. You saw that on every goal. I chipped the puck to [Lucic's] corner. I don’t know how he got the puck every time.”

Anton Khudobin made 32 saves for Boston, while Michal Neuvirth, in a rare second straight start, made 34 saves for the Capitals.

In addition to three points, Horton capped a Gordie Howe hat trick with a fight against Matt Hendricks in the second period.

“They showed exactly what we need to see from them on a more consistent basis,” Julien said. “They were skating the north-south type game, they were forechecking, being physical. Because of that they were turning pucks over, and not only that, they were strong on the puck, and they made their chances count.”

The Capitals have now lost four of their last five and scored just six goals in their last four outings.

“Only because I feel a little snake-bit,” Capitals coach Adam Oates said about his concern with the offense. “We have had a lot of chances. [Nicklas Backstrom] gets robbed, [Jason Chimera] gets robbed. [Alexander Ovechkin] had a bunch of shots. Power plays could be better, Marcus [Johansson]. I’m not worried about production, it will be there, and you go through stretches.”

http://www.nhl.com/ice/recap.htm?id=2012020405&navid=sb:recap

This Day In Sabres History:

March 17, 1991

The Sabres beat the Whalers 6-1 at the Aud to break a 12-game winless streak at home, the longest at that time in franchise history. Their last win in Buffalo had come on January 27

Injury Report:

Washington: Laich Strained Groin(IR/Out), Orlov Upper Body(IR/Out), Green Strained Groin(IR/Out), Erskine Upper Body(IR/Out), Kundratek Lower Body(Questionable)

Buffalo: Sulzer Right Knee Surgery(IR/Out), Sekera Upper Body(Questionable), Kaleta Suspension(Probable)

Next 5 Games:

Mar 19 at Montreal Canadiens 7:30 PM(MSG HD, TSN HD)

Mar 21 vs. Toronto Maple Leafs 7:00 PM(MSG HD)

Mar 23 at Montreal Canadiens 7:00 PM(MSG HD, CBC HD)

Mar 26 at Tampa Bay Lightning 7:30 PM(MSG HD)

Mar 28 at Florida Panthers 7:30 PM(MSG HD)

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