@ 7:00 PM
Buffalo: December 19 vs Bruins Won 4-2
Boston: December 19 at Sabres Loss 4-2
Rank In Conference:
Buffalo: 16th(8th in Atlantic)
Boston: 2nd(1st in Atlantic)
Power Play Rankings:
Penalty Kill Rankings:
Buffalo: Moulson(12), Hodgson(8), Ennis(7), Foligno(5)
Boston: Lucic(11), Smith, Bergeron, and Chara(9), Iginla and Krug(8), Marchand(7)
Buffalo: Hodgson(11), Moulson and Ehrhoff(10), Stafford(9), Girgensons(8)
Boston: Krejci(23), Smith(14), Lucic and Iginla(13), Soderberg(11)
Buffalo: Moulson(22), Hodgson(19), Ennis(14), Ehrhoff, and Stafford(12)
Boston: Krejci(29), Lucic(24), Smith(23), Iginla(21)
Buffalo: Sulzer(+2), Ellis(+1), Adam and McNabb(EV), Kaleta and D’Agostini(-1)
Boston: Iginla(+13), Bergeron(+12), Krejci(+11), Boychuk(+10)
Buffalo: Scott(44), McCormick(43), Myers and Ott(39), Foligno(38)
Boston: Thornton(41), McQuaid(39), Iginla(36), Lucic(35)
Buffalo: Stafford(82), Hodgson(80), Moulson(78), Ennis(69)
Boston: Bergeron(100), Iginla(97), Chara(81), Krug(80)
Buffalo: Hodgson(259), Ott(197), Foligno(118), Ennis(68)
Boston: Bergeron(440), Krejci(268), Kelly(184), Campbell(148)
Buffalo: Ott(117), Foligno(91), Girgensons(67), Weber(64)
Boston: Lucic(112), Chara(76), Iginla(66), Campbell(59)
Buffalo: Ehrhoff(56), Myers(49), Tallinder and Weber(41), Pysyk(38)
Boston: Boychuk(59), Seidenberg(58), Chara(48), Krug(46)
Tonight’s Starting Goaltending Matchup:
Buffalo: Ryan Miller 8-17-0 2.83 GAA .922 SV% 0 SO
Boston: Tuukka Rask 17-8-2 1.90 GAA .934 SV% 3 SO
Last Meeting: December 19 Sabres Won 4-2
Season Series: Tied 1-1-0
All-Time: Bruins Lead 123-109-38
All-Time at BOS: Bruins Lead 73-43-17
February 26 vs Bruins 7:30(NBCSN HD)
April 12 at Bruins 12:30 PM(MSG HD)
Last Game Recap:
Sabres Scored Four To Down Bruins
The Buffalo Sabres have been able to generate scoring chances and bury the puck the past two games. Their effort has resulted in two victories on home ice. Thursday night, they put down the top team in the Atlantic Division.
Buffalo defeated the Boston Bruins 4-2 at First Niagara Center. The Sabres have scored four goals in back-to-back games, a feat they haven’t accomplished since the end of last season.
Boston held a 2-1 lead before the Sabres came back with three unanswered goals. Buffalo also rallied from a two-goal deficit Tuesday to beat the Winnipeg Jets 4-2.
Drew Stafford scored on a wraparound with 5:41 remaining in regulation to give Buffalo a 3-2 lead over Boston. He skated in around Bruins defenseman Matt Bartkowski and tucked the shot in past goaltender Chad Johnson’s right pad.
Brad Marchand scored both of Boston’s goals. Johnson stopped 19 shots for the Bruins. Sabres goaltender Ryan Miller made 34 saves.
The Sabres have had their confidence bolstered lately with the strong offensive output that’s also resulting in earning two points in the standings.
“It helps winning games. It’s fun coming to the rink. It just boosts the morale,” Flynn said. “We knew we were getting closer and closer. It’s a matter of just scoring the goals that we have the past two games. We’ve had the chances we just haven’t bared down. The past few games we’ve been able to do that.”
The Sabres opened the scoring as Flynn tallied shorthanded with 3:33 remaining in the first period. He raced past the Bruins defense and roofed a backhand over Johnson. It was Buffalo’s first shorthanded goal of the year and the first for the Sabres since Flynn scored on April 22 against Montreal.
The goal was Flynn’s third of the year. He also had an assist on Tuesday.
“I feel pretty confident, comfortable of what’s expected of me,” he said. “Make sure I just do a really good job defensively, don’t get scored on, do a good job on the penalty kill. And then you have games like this, it’s a little bit of a bonus.”
Bruins seek split of home-and-home vs. Sabres
Big story: Buffalo has won two in a row in regulation for the first time this season; it has not won three in a row in any manner. Of the Sabres’ nine wins, three are against the Bruins, Los Angeles Kings and San Jose Sharks (sixth, fourth and seventh in the NHL standings prior to Saturday).
“I expect [Boston] to probably be a little upset about the loss,” Sabres defenseman Mike Weber told the team website. “I think we’ve always played them hard and it’s always been a hard-fought game. I’m not too worried about anything. It’s always better when you’re into the game when people are hitting you and you’re hitting them back, and you’re into the battles in front of the net.”
Sabres: Buffalo acquired forward Linus Omark in a trade Thursday and will put him to work Saturday.
“He’ll take a spot in the lineup,” interim coach Ted Nolan said Friday, according to the Buffalo News. “I’m not 100 percent sure exactly where we’ll put him yet but he’ll play tomorrow night.”
The Sabres are short a forward after Cody Hodgson sustained a wrist injury blocking a shot by Krug in the first period Thursday. Nolan said Hodgson would be out “maybe a week or two or three. I’m not sure.”
Omark, 26, played one game this season for the Edmonton Oilers, who received a conditional sixth-round draft pick in return. He was fourth in the American Hockey League with 29 points in 29 games for Oklahoma City.
“He’s getting pretty close,” coach Claude Julien told the Boston Herald after practice Friday. “Honestly it’s a matter of game-to-game right now. I don’t know yet [about the game Saturday], but I wouldn’t write him off.”
McQuaid hasn’t played this month because of a lower-body injury reported to be a groin pull, missing eight games (5-3-0). The Bruins could wait until after the three-day Christmas break to give him a little more recovery time.
“I hope that’s not the case,” McQuaid told the Herald. “I want to be back playing as soon as I can. I definitely don’t want to be going through that cycle of coming back a little bit too soon [and getting hurt again]. But when I’m ready, I’ll be ready. Hopefully that’s sooner rather than later.”
Who’s hot: The Sabres have killed 14 penalties in a row; they haven’t allowed a power-play goal since Dec. 5. Forward Brian Flynn has three of his season’s six points in the past two games. Forward Drew Stafford has three points in four games, including his first goal since Nov. 5. Defenseman Christian Ehrhoff has five points in the past six. … Bruins forward Brad Marchand had two goals Thursday, and defenseman Zdeno Chara had two on Tuesday. Forward David Krejci has 11 points in his past 10 games.
Buffalo: McCormick Upper Body(IR/Out), Hodgson Upper Body(Out)
Boston: Savard Post-Concussion Syndrome(IR/Out), McQuaid Lower Body(IR/Out), Kelly Broken Ankle(IR/Out), Paille Concussion-Like Symptoms(Out), Eriksson Concussion(IR/Out), Hamilton Lower Body(IR/Out), Thornton Suspension(Out)
Next 5 Games:
December 23 vs Phoenix Coyotes 7:00 PM(MSG HD/Bell TV HD)
December 27 at Toronto Maple Leafs 7:30 PM(MSG HD/TSN HD)
December 29 vs Washington Capitals 5:00 PM(MSG HD/Bell TV HD)
December 31 at Winnipeg Jets 7:00 PM(MSG HD/TSN HD)
January 2 at Minnesota Wild 8:00 PM(MSG HD/Bell TV HD)