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Sabres @ Ottawa 7:30 ET, MSG and ESPN+

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image.thumb.png.f75bb5fe45c0acb2c473c3dc1b2dd726.png  VS  image.thumb.png.04454cea2c9b7a55c5e592a56d57165e.png

 

The most important game of the season IMO because it will answer if we are sellers at the deadline or possibly buyers. Sabres come in with a 3 game winning streak but Ottawa has been a pain this year and has come up with some upsets including beating Dallas in their last game and the Sabres in their last meeting 5-2. Can the Sabres win a big game or be our heartbreaker again?? Can Dahlin take sole possession of 2nd place all time in points?? Can Jack continue his awesome season, can Skinner finally break his non goal scoring streak?? We'll find out tonight Sabre fans. 

THINGS YOU SHOULD KNOW

Tonight’s game is the first in a seven-game stretch during which the Sabres will play six road games. The lone home game will take place on Feb. 23 vs. Winnipeg.

The Sabres have gone 11-5-3 in their last 19 games against the Senators.

Jack Eichel has recorded 24 points (10+14) in 16 career games against the Senators, including eight points (3+5) in seven road games. The 24 points represent his highest total against any NHL opponent and his 1.5 points per game against the Senators ties his scoring rate against the Vegas Golden Knights for his personal best.

Sam Reinhart has totaled 17 points (7+10) in his last 17 meetings with the Senators.

Colin Miller has recorded five points (1+4) in his last four games against Ottawa.

Zemgus Girgensons has posted a point in both of Buffalo’s last two meetings with the Senators (1+1).

Sam Reinhart has recorded 17 points (9+8) in 18 games since the beginning of January. His nine goals during that stretch tied for 15th-most in the league entering play Monday.

 

LETS GO BUFFALO

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Biggest game against Ottawa since

EDIT:  I posted the Leopold scrum goal last game and the Sabres won.  So I'm upping the ante with this video.

Edited by Doohickie
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One period at a time and one game at a time. Not even worried about the standings at this point.

What is important is this franchise putting wins together, improving week to week and watching Ralph Kruger change the culture of this franchise, which I feel confident he can do.

Seeing players Dahlin keep improving, watching Eichel continue his Hart worthy campaign, and hopefully Botterill makes the right decisions on how to jettison out of town and work to keep.

 

Edited by Ruff Around The Edges
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9 minutes ago, Brawndo said:

Johan Larsson will warm up with the team after taking a maintenance day yesterday. Sabres will warm up w/ 13 forwards & 6 defensemen and reveal lineup then.

This seems like.... odd wording.

Makes me wonder if he's dealing with illness/injury or on the trading block.

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23 minutes ago, Doohickie said:

This seems like.... odd wording.

Makes me wonder if he's dealing with illness/injury or on the trading block.

He's likely dealing with a relatively minor injury - thus the maintenance day yesterday.

If he's good to go in the warmups, he's in.  If not the spare F (Wilson?) gets to play and Lazar backfills Larsson's spot on the checking line.

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32 minutes ago, Doohickie said:

This seems like.... odd wording.

Makes me wonder if he's dealing with illness/injury or on the trading block.

 

5 minutes ago, Taro T said:

He's likely dealing with a relatively minor injury - thus the maintenance day yesterday.

If he's good to go in the warmups, he's in.  If not the spare F (Wilson?) gets to play and Lazar backfills Larsson's spot on the checking line.

And the Senators must be on pins and needles...

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35 minutes ago, Doohickie said:

This seems like.... odd wording.

Makes me wonder if he's dealing with illness/injury or on the trading block.

They are getting quite a few calls on him 

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I will be mad if we have to replace Larsson this offseason. And yes, I know Lazar exists 

If we do, I'd give it a 25% chance we get a fourth line next year that doesn't blow chunks, hemorrhage shots against, and need to be relegated to 6 easy minutes per night

Edited by Randall Flagg

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1 minute ago, Randall Flagg said:

I will be mad if we have to replace Larsson this offseason. And yes, I know Lazar exists 

Honestly, I don't think I would be mad with any replacements, other than JAck and Dahlin. This team has a loooong way to go and it has not worked yet with the same names. Upgrades are needed everywhere.

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10 minutes ago, Randall Flagg said:

I will be mad if we have to replace Larsson this offseason. And yes, I know Lazar exists 

If we do, I'd give it a 25% chance we get a fourth line next year that doesn't blow chunks, hemorrhage shots against, and need to be relegated to 6 easy minutes per night

It depends on who is 2C and 3C. If we have a legitimate NHL-caliber center spine above the 4C and it can just be an energy guy (Lazar) or a shootout specialist (Mitts) at under 10 minutes a night, it could be OK. But yeah, if it's Eichel-still unready Mitts-some overpriced washed up 3C-Lazar... then yes, release your anger!

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11 minutes ago, CallawaySabres said:

Honestly, I don't think I would be mad with any replacements, other than JAck and Dahlin. This team has a loooong way to go and it has not worked yet with the same names. Upgrades are needed everywhere.

Needlessly making your list of "things we need to fix" in the offseason longer than it has to be reduces the likelihood that you can complete the list and ice a good team. 

Our fourth line is elite defensively by any metric, against strong opponents, and is actually contributing a surprising amount offensively. For the last decade prior to last season, Sabres fourth lines would get out-shot and out-scored and out-chanced by a 65/35 ratio, and it would tax the entire lineup trying to hide the major anchor it provided. 

Now, we have a tool that we can use against elite players that absorbs the toughest minutes against the toughest players and still outscores their opponents while on the ice, and can give the puck to Jack's line with the other team reeling and with Sabre possession rather than forcing Jack to spend half his shift and energy going to get the puck back first, with reeling teammates and inspired opponents. This has absolutely has a positive effect on the Sabres as a whole, and their skill players (who, coincidentally (not really), for the first time in their careers (jack and sam) are actually winning all even strength battles, from advanced stats to actual goals scored.

None of the players that are making this happen were brought in by Jason, and only 1 of his ~10 depth acquisitions over the last three seasons have been capable of sustaining this type of performance in this type of role, so I'm skeptical that Jason could build a line from scratch for this job that does half as well. It's hard to do, and we have it right now, so keep it. 

There's literally no use adding a whole new thing to the already-long list of things to do to get better this summer.

Edited by Randall Flagg
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16 minutes ago, Randall Flagg said:

I will be mad if we have to replace Larsson this offseason. And yes, I know Lazar exists 

If we do, I'd give it a 25% chance we get a fourth line next year that doesn't blow chunks, hemorrhage shots against, and need to be relegated to 6 easy minutes per night

All of this. 

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In fact, in the Columbus game, when down 2-0, I posted during the exact moment that the tide of the game switched, that we "receieved the shift we needed" and that we were winning the game. It was a successful, grinding shift from GLO. You can just tell that it's happening. They settle down anti-Sabre chaos and create the environment for Jack and co. to pounce

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2 minutes ago, Randall Flagg said:

Needlessly making your list of "things we need to fix" in the offseason longer than it has to be reduces the likelihood that you can complete the list and ice a good team. 

Our fourth line is elite defensively by any metric, against strong opponents, and is actually contributing a surprising amount offensively. For the last decade prior to last season, Sabres fourth lines would get out-shot and out-scored and out-chanced by a 65/35 ratio, and it would tax the entire lineup trying to hide the major anchor it provided. 

Now, we have a tool that we can use against elite players that absorbs the toughest minutes against the toughest players and still outscores their opponents while on the ice, and can give the puck to Jack's line with the other team reeling and with Sabre possession rather than forcing Jack to spend half his shift and energy going to get the puck back first, with reeling teammates and inspired opponents. This has absolutely has a positive effect on the Sabres as a whole, and their skill players (who, coincidentally (not really), for the first time in their careers (jack and sam) are actually winning all even strength battles, from advanced stats to actual goals scored.

None of the players that are making this happen were brought in by Jason, and only 1 of his ~10 depth acquisitions over the last three seasons have been capable of sustaining this type of performance in this type of role, so I'm skeptical that Jason could build a line from scratch for this job that does half as well. It's hard to do, and we have it right now, so keep it. 

There's literally no use adding a whole new thing to the already-long list of things to do to get better this summer.

Jack, Dahlin, and Larsson....and this lamp, that's all I want

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3 hours ago, jsb said:

The most important game of the season IMO because it will answer if we are sellers at the deadline or possibly buyers.

 

Agreed. If we lose tonight, we are 100% sellers. But if we win tonight and then take at least 3 of the next 4 points before the trade deadline, I think we need to be buyers.

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Be curious to see how tonight goes.

Larsson?  That whole line is important.  If they let him go it better be for something good.. and I hope he comes back.  You don't get a line like the GLO line very often... when you do, you want to keep it together unless they know with as much certainty possible that someone else can fill the role.

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This is a big one and i want to win.  I love winning. 

I don't want to be a "Seller" and I don't want JBOT making dumb trades wasting assets just to do something before the deadline. 

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The Ottawa games have been frustrating this year. 

Jack scored four in our only win, which was cool, but if he didn't absolutely go off that night, we were losing that game. Then, we lost the next two in regulation, outscored 8-3. They know how to slow us down and keep us out of the slot. They displayed an ability to make Jack a non-factor. 

Hopefully we can break through tonight. 

Edited by Randall Flagg

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4 minutes ago, Randall Flagg said:

The Ottawa games have been frustrating this year. 

Jack scored four in our only win, which was cool, but if he didn't absolutely go off that night, we were losing that game. Then, we lost the next two in regulation, outscored 8-3. They know how to slow us down and keep us out of the slot. They displayed an ability to make Jack a non-factor. 

Hopefully we can break through tonight. 

Craig Anderson basically owns us ever since the 16-17 season where he lost 3 of 3 to us. 

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