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POSTED ON Saturday, 03.10.2012 / 2:02 PM
By Kevin Snow - Sabres.com (@kwsnow) / THE MORNING SKATE

LINEUP NEWS
- Thomas Vanek and Patrick Kaleta will be game-time decisions
- Ryan Miller expected to get the start in goal.
- Marcus Foligno has been recalled on an emergency basis from Rochester
- Ben Bishop will get the start in goal for Ottawa; Erik Karlsson is a game-time decision

WHAT THEY WERE SAYING
Lindy Ruff (listen to the full audio)
What are you expecting from the Senators tonight?
I think they’ve been playing good hockey. They just beat the Rangers. Obviously every point is as important for them as it is for us. They beat a good hockey team last time in this building, and we’re gonna have to be on our game.

What’s different about the Sens now as compared to the start of the season?
Spezza’s had a great year for them, and Michalek too. They had a great run, followed by a six or seven game losing streak – which seems to be normal for this league. When you look at it, you point to the young defenseman having a great year, along with a couple of their key forwards up front. They’ve had exceptional years.

Marcus Foligno has been on a lot of planes lately; what can you expect from him if he plays?
If he does play, I’d like to see him be the best Foligno out there.

TODAY’S GAME
SABRES at SENATORS
-This is the sixth and final meeting between the Sabres and Senators this season.
-Last meeting: Ottawa defeated Buffalo, 3-2 (SO), in Buffalo on Dec. 31.
-The Sabres are 6-2-2 in their last 10 games vs. the Senators; 5-5-0 on the road.
-This is the 112th game all-time between Buffalo and Ottawa; Buffalo leads the series with a 55-40-16 record. Buffalo is 25-21-10 on the road against the Senators all-time.

STORYLINES
-The Sabres are 7-1-2 in their last 10 games, trailing only Pittsburgh and Dallas for most points among all NHL teams in their last 10 games.
-Buffalo enters tonight’s game two points out of a playoff spot after beginning the day on Feb. 17 in 14th place in the Eastern Conference and 10 points out.
-The Sabres are 9-5-4 against the Northeast Division this season, including a 2-1-2 record against the Senators.
-Tyler Ennis has eight points (3+5) in eight career games against Ottawa, including points in each of his last four (2+3) against the Senators.

THINGS YOU SHOULD KNOW
Buffalo is 26-3-2 when allowing two or fewer goals and 22-4-3 when scoring three or more… The Sabres are 13-5-3 with Corey Tropp in the lineup… Thomas Vanek left Thursday’s game with an upper body injury… The Sabres are 9-1-3 when Ennis records a point this season and 36-9-7 when he tallies a point in his career.

HOMETOWN BOY
Derek Roy, an Ottawa native, is Buffalo’s leading scorer against the Senators with 36 points (14+22) in 44 games played. Roy has tallied five points (2+3) in five games against the Sens this year, and added the game-deciding goal in the shootout when the teams met on Nov. 5.



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POSTED ON Thursday, 03.08.2012 / 12:21 PM
By Kevin Snow - Sabres.com (@kwsnow) / THE MORNING SKATE

BOSTON -- The last time Buffalo ventured into the TD Banknorth Garden in Boston on November 12, they were riding a four-game winning streak and sat in fifth-place in the Eastern Conference with a record of 10-5-0. Things were much different when they boarded a plane for Montreal after that game.

The Bruins had rocked the Sabres with a 6-2 loss, and a controversial hit delivered by Boston’s Milan Lucic left goaltender Ryan Miller with a concussion that caused him to miss eight games.

The Sabres are 21-23-8 since that night, but a recent run of 7-1-2 in their past 10 games has vaulted them to within two points of the final playoff spot in the East.

Miller has been a huge reason for the team’s recent success. Questions regarding his health have disappeared during a stretch that has seen him make 10 straight starts while playing in 21 consecutive games. (Miller’s only non-start during this streak was a relief appearance during a 7-2 loss in Philadelphia on February 16.) It’s been 50 days since Miller last watched an entire game from the bench – January 18 in Chicago.

The NHL’s reigning First Star of the week is 7-1-1 in his last nine games with a .949 save percentage and a 1.65 goals against average; and 12-3-3 in his last 18 games with a 1.84 GAA and a .939 save %.

These stellar numbers have left head coach Lindy Ruff with an interesting dilemma as they return to the scene of the November crime. Does he start Miller for the 11th straight game, in front of what will likely be a raucous Boston crowd? Or does he give him a break and opt for Jhonas Enroth, who is 0-1-2 with a 2.68 GAA in four career games against the Bruins? (As a comparison: Miller is 22-6-7 in 35 career games versus Boston, with a 2.53 GAA and .917 save %)

Ruff wasn’t available to the media today as the Sabres held an optional morning skate following last night’s 3-2 overtime win over Carolina. (This is Buffalo’s fifth game in eight days, and second of a stretch that has them playing three in four.) But even if Ruff was to talk to the media this morning, the chances of him revealing his starting goaltender on a game day are about as good as me choosing a vacation in Winnipeg over a trip to Disney World.

Following last night’s game, Miller downplayed the reaction to his comments to reporters after Monday’s 3-1 loss in Winnipeg. “As you can tell, I’m tired from this trip,” Miller said while standing in front of stall at the MTS Centre. “I can barely talk right now.”

Miller said those words were spoken in the moment, and don’t reflect his current state of mind.

“I’m fine. We’ll see how everything plays out here. Lindy will want to get a plan together. I’ll get as much rest as possible. If they need me to play, I’ll play. We’ll go from there,” Miller explained. “I think this all kind of spun out of me saying I was exhausted or something like that. It was three in four at the tail end of a road trip where we played four games, so I was commenting on that. We had a chance to travel without any practice and get some rest.

“We do this for a living; we’ve done this a lot. I sat on the couch for I don’t know how many hours, just putting food in my mouth and watching mindless television. That usually does the trick.”



TODAY’S GAME
SABRES at BRUINS
-Fifth of six meetings between the Sabres and Bruins this season.
-Last meeting: Buffalo defeated Boston, 2-1, in Buffalo on Feb. 24.
-The teams meet next on Saturday, Apr. 7 in Boston for the last game of the season.
-The Sabres are 6-2-2 in their last 10 games vs. the Bruins; 4-5-1 on the road.
-This is the 262nd game all-time between Buffalo and Boston; Buffalo leads the series with a 114-108-39 record; Buffalo is 44-67-18 all-time against the Bruins on the road.

STORYLINES
-The Sabres are 7-1-2 in their last 10 games, tying Pittsburgh (8-2-0) and Dallas (7-1-2) for most points among all NHL teams in their last 10 games.
-Buffalo enters tonight’s game two points out of a playoff spot after beginning the day on Feb. 17 in 14th place in the Eastern Conference and 10 points out.
-The Sabres are 9-4-4 against the Northeast Division this season, including a 2-1-1 record against the Bruins.

THINGS YOU SHOULD KNOW
Buffalo has faced Boston more than any other team in franchise history, with 261 games played between the two clubs… Buffalo is 26-3-2 when allowing two or fewer goals and 22-4-3 when scoring three or more… The Sabres are 13-4-3 with Corey Tropp in the lineup.

LET'S PLAY TWO
Tonight’s game wraps up Buffalo’s 19th of a league-high 21 sets of back-to-back games this season after last night’s 3-2 overtime win vs. CAR. The Sabres are 12-7-0 in the first game and 6-7-5 in the second. Buffalo’s points breakdown in back-to-back sets is as follows: four points (3), three points (2), two points (9), one point (3) and zero points (1).
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POSTED ON Monday, 03.05.2012 / 2:16 PM
By Kevin Snow - Sabres.com (@kwsnow) / THE MORNING SKATE

LINEUP NEWS
- Ryan Miller will get the start in goal.
- Robyn Regehr expects to back in lineup after missing Saturday's game in Vancouver with lower body injury.
- Marcus Foligno has been recalled on an emergency basis from the AHL's Rochester Americans.

WHAT THEY WERE SAYING
Lindy Ruff (listen to the full audio)
Are these the kind of big games you live for as a coach?
We’ve been living for every game. It started in Anaheim. We treated that as a game that we wanted to get this trip off to a great start. We tried to follow that up in San Jose, and knew we were in for a real tough one in Vancouver. This team here has been one of the better home teams; they’ve really played well in this building. We’re gonna have to play well, execute and make big plays.

Robyn Regehr said he’s ready to play – will he play?
What, and break up a winning lineup? We’ll make that a game day decision. He’s doing good. I thought he looked good out there at the morning skate.

Marcus Foligno has been recalled?
Yeah. We’ve got a couple of guys up front that we want to be sure of, and we don’t want to get caught.

TODAY’S GAME
SABRES at JETS

- This is the fourth and final meeting between the Sabres and Jets this season.
- Last meeting: Winnipeg defeated Buffalo, 4-1, in Winnipeg on Jan. 19.
- Sabres are 6-2-2 in their last 10 games vs. the Jets; 2-3-5 on the road.
- 48th game all-time between Buffalo and Winnipeg; Buffalo leads the series with a 21-15-11 record.
- Sabres are 7-9-7 all-time on the road against Winnipeg.

STORYLINES
- Buffalo has points in eight consecutive games (6-0-2) for the first time since going 8-0-3 in 11 games from Dec. 26, 2009 to Jan. 18, 2010.
- The Sabres have has won their last three on the road and will look to win four straight road games for the first time since winning the first four road games of the season (Oct. 8-20). They haven’t won more than four in a row on the road since winning their first 10 road games of the 2006-07 season.
- A regulation win tonight would put the Sabres in playoff position for the first time since Dec. 19 (77 days ago). Buffalo’s largest point deficit from eighth place this season was 10 points. The Sabres were last 10 points out of playoff position on Feb. 16, just 18 days ago.
- The Sabres are looking for their first win in the city of Winnipeg since Feb. 10, 1993.

THINGS YOU SHOULD KNOW
Buffalo is 25-3-2 when allowing two or fewer goals and 21-4-3 when scoring three or more... Buffalo has scored first in their last nine games, going 6-1-2… The Sabres are 12-3-3 with Corey Tropp in the lineup… With 32 points (12+20) in 26 career games against Winnipeg, Derek Roy has more points against the Jets than any other non-divisional opponent.

IT’S MILLER TIME
Ryan Miller was named the NHL's First Star of the week after going 3-0-0 with a 1.00 GAA and .974 save %. He started the week with back-to-back road shutouts against Anaheim and San Jose. Miller is 6-0-1 in his last seven games with a .958 % and a 1.40 GAA; and 11-2-3 in his last 17 games with a 1.70 GAA and a .944 save %. Over his last three games, Miller made 106 consecutive saves without allowing a goal before finally being beaten in the second period on Saturday. The goal snapped his shutout streak at 155:37, just 5:59 short of his career-best.

TYLER’S ON A TEAR
Tyler Ennis has eight points (3+5) in his last nine games and is currently on a career-best five-game point streak (1+4). The Sabres are 9-1-3 when Ennis records a point this season and 36-9-7 when he tallies a point in his career. The team is 18-8-5 this season with Ennis in the lineup.


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POSTED ON Saturday, 03.03.2012 / 4:03 PM
By Kevin Snow - Sabres.com (@kwsnow) / THE MORNING SKATE
LINEUP NEWS
- Ryan Miller is expected to get the start in goal.
- Robyn Regehr will not play (lower body); Alexander Sulzer will take his place.
- Marcus Foligno has been recalled from Rochester

WHAT THEY WERE SAYING
Lindy Ruff
What’s the latest on Robyn Regehr?
He’s just day-to-day. He was evaluated, and rode the bike today. We’ll see where it goes tomorrow.

What has Cody Hodgson brought to your team?
His line has really played well. They scored the only goal in San Jose, and I thought they were in on four or five really good opportunities. He’s had a couple of great opportunities himself. He’s played well for us. We’re looking for offense out of him. The chances have been there, but he hasn’t finished.

Cody Hodgson
How does it feel to be back in Vancouver?
It’s weird, a different feel. It’s like being a guest at home. It’s just different, but I’ll be used to it by the time I get on the ice tonight.

How did your first two games go?
It’s been good. Obviously we won two games, and that’s a plus. Hopefully we can keep it going.

We all know hockey is hockey, but how are you mentally with the move?
Obviously I was shocked initially. But the more you think about it, it’s just a hockey trade. They got some good players, and they’re helping them win. Hopefully I can do the same thing in Buffalo, that’s all I’m focused on.

TODAY’S GAME
SABRES at CANUCKS
-Only meeting of the season between the Sabres and Canucks.
-Last meeting: Buffalo defeated Vancouver 4-3 (OT) on Nov.15, 2010.
-The Sabres are 5-4-1 in their last 10 games vs. Canucks; 3-6-1 on the road.
-110th all-time game between BUF and VAN; series is even 45-45-19 (all ties)
-Buffalo is 16-27-11 all-time in Vancouver.

STORYLINES
-Buffalo has earned points in a season-high seven consecutive games (5-0-2) entering tonight’s game. This is the first time they’ve picked up points in seven straight games since Feb. 23-Mar.6/11. The last time Buffalo collected points in eight or more games was Dec. 26/09-Jan. 18/10 when they went 8-0-3 through 11 games,
-Ryan Miller is 5-0-1 in his last six games with a .966 save percentage and a 1.14 GAA.
-Miller has recorded back-to-back shutouts, and has not allowed a goal in 120:00. His career shutout streak high is 161:35, set from Nov.27/10-Dec. 7/10. 
-The Sabres are 0-5-1 in their last six games in Vancouver, with their last win coming on Feb. 28, 1999. The six games are the most they’ve gone without a road win against any team in the NHL.

THINGS YOU SHOULD KNOW
The Sabres are 9-6-0 against the West, and 2-0-0 against Northwest Division teams this season… Vancouver is 6-0-0 against Northeast teams this season… Tyler Ennis has seven points in his last eight games, and is currently on a four-game assist streak... The Sabres are 8-1-3 when Ennis records a point; 35-9-7 in his career.
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POSTED ON Thursday, 03.01.2012 / 5:09 PM
By Kevin Snow - Sabres.com (@kwsnow) / THE MORNING SKATE

SAN JOSE, Calif. --- It was after 2 a.m. local time when the Buffalo Sabres finally arrived at their hotel in downtown San Jose on Thursday, so there was no morning skate for the team today in advance of tonight’s contest with the Sharks at HP Pavilion. Game time is 10:30 p.m. ET/7:30 p.m. PT.

Sabres head coach Lindy Ruff will hold his game-day media availability about two hours before the game. Check back to Sabres.com for later for audio of his press conference along with any lineup news.

A curfew at San Jose International Airport prevents flights from taking off or landing after 11 p.m., so the Sabres actually flew 40 miles further north to Oakland, and followed that up with a 45-minute bus ride back down I-880 to their final destination. It will be more of the same following tonight’s game, with the Sabres not expected to arrive in Vancouver until sometime in the range of 2 a.m.

Of course, more time on the bus after games also allows for more of the most unpredictable conversations you’ll ever have. Last night’s ride featured a lot of pro wrestling talk, as broadcast producer Joe Pinter challenged anyone to name a wrestler so he could dazzle us with random facts about them. And if you think Brian Duff is a walking encyclopedia of NHL facts, you’ll be surprised to know he’s well versed in wrestling lore too, even dropping an Iron Mike Sharpe reference on the group. I also learned something when Kevin Sylvester chimed in with the news that the legendary Adrian Adonis was from Kenmore, NY. A quick check of Wikipedia also taught me that Adonis was killed in a car accident in Newfoundland while swerving to avoid a moose.

But I digress.

The Sabres (28-27-8, 64 points) come into tonight’s game on a 4-0-2 roll, and are trying to earn points in seven consecutive games for the first time this season. They are five points behind eight-place Washington for the final playoff spot in the East, and win tonight would move them into 10th spot – leapfrogging over the idle Maple Leafs and Lightning. The Winnipeg Jets hold down ninth-place in the East, and they could overtake Washington tonight with a win in Florida. The Capitals don’t play again until Friday when the host the New Jersey Devils.

The Sharks (33-22-7, 73 points) are two points behind the Pacific Division-leading Phoenix Coyotes, with one game in hand. San Jose defeated Philadelphia 1-0 on Tuesday, and they are looking to win back-to-back games for the first time since February 2. Tuesday’s game was San Jose’s first at home after a 17-day road trip that saw them stumble to a 2-6-1 mark, and drop them out of first place in the Pacific.

Head coach Todd McLellan is suffering from concussion-like symptoms, and will not be behind the Sharks bench for the second straight game after being struck in the head by an opposing player's stick during Saturday’s game in Minnesota. Jamie McGinn and Minnesota’s Marco Scandella were involved in a play along the boards in front of the Sharks bench when Scandella’s stick came around and “tomahawked” McLellan in the head. He eventually made his way to the Sharks’ locker room under his own power after appearing to collapse behind the bench.



TODAY’S GAME
SABRES at SHARKS
-Only meeting of the season between the Sabres and Sharks.
-When we last met: Buffalo defeated San Jose, 3-0, in San Jose on Jan. 6, 2011.
-The Sabres are 7-2-1 in their last 10 games vs. the Sharks; 2-4-4 on the road.

STORYLINES
-Buffalo has earned points in six consecutive games (4-0-2) entering tonight’s game, tying the season-high set between Jan. 24 and Feb. 10 (5-0-1). The Sabres last had points in seven straight from Feb. 23 to March 6 last season, when they went 5-0-2.
-Ryan Miller is 4-0-1 in his last five games with a .957 save percentage and a 1.36 goals against average. Miller set a regular season franchise record for most saves in a shutout with 43 saves last night at ANA, topping Dominik Hasek’s 42 saves in a 1-0 win vs. MTL on Dec. 19, 1997.
-With Cody Hodgson’s debut last night, Buffalo has dressed 33 players (30 skaters, 3 goaltenders) this season. It is their highest total since they had the same number in 2003-04. The Sabres have also dressed nine rookies for the first time since 2006-07.

THINGS YOU SHOULD KNOW
The Sabres are 4-1-0 against Pacific division teams this season… Buffalo is 24-3-2 when allowing two or fewer goals and 20-4-3 when scoring three or more… The Sabres are 16-8-5 with Tyler Ennis in the lineup this season and 7-1-3 when he records a point (34-9-7 in his career)…Buffalo has scored first in their last seven games, going 4-1-2.
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POSTED ON Wednesday, 02.29.2012 / 5:21 PM
By Kevin Snow - Sabres.com (@kwsnow) / THE MORNING SKATE

TONIGHT’S LINES
Vanek-Roy-Pominville
Stafford-Hodgson-Ennis
Gerbe-Leino-Kaleta
Ellis-Boyes-Tropp

LINEUP NEWS
- Cody Hodgson will make his Sabres debut centering Drew Stafford and Tyler Ennis.
- Ville Leino moves back to center between Nathan Gerbe and Patrick Kaleta.
- Ryan Miller is expected to get the start in goal.

WHAT THEY WERE SAYING
Lindy Ruff (click to hear full audio)
How much thought went into your lines, specifically moving Ennis back to the wing?
There’s nothing etched in stone with those lines. We didn’t get a chance to practice them so we really don’t know what they’re going to look like. We can easily take a look at different lines, even during the game. It’s something when you bring players in, it’s always a little bit disruptive because some guys are getting moved out of their spots. With Gaus going out, somebody has to go in that spot. A lot of times it takes a bit of time.

Cody Hodgson (click to hear full audio)
What are your thoughts on being a Buffalo Sabre?
I’m excited. It’s a good group of guys – they’re younger, a lot of offensively-skilled players, steady d-corps, and great goaltending. Hopefully I’ll be able to fit in.

What was your initial reaction to the trade, and where are you at with it now?
I didn’t know what to think. I’m excited, I’m looking forward to it. Like I said, it’s a good group of guys and hopefully I can fit in and do well. I’m interested in helping the team get into the playoff picture.

TODAY’S GAME
SABRES at DUCKS
-This is the second of two meetings between the Sabres and Ducks this season.
-Last meeting: Buffalo defeated Anaheim, 4-1, in Helsinki, Finland to open the regular season on Oct. 7.
-The Sabres are 6-4-0 in their last 10 games vs. the Ducks; 6-4-0 on the road.
-This is the 26th game all-time between Buffalo and Anaheim; Buffalo leads the series with a 14-8-3 record.

STORYLINES
-Buffalo has gotten points in five or more consecutive games for the second time this season (3-0-2) entering tonight’s game. A win or overtime loss would extend the streak to six, tying the season-high set between Jan. 24 and Feb. 10 (5-0-1).
-The Sabres, who have lost their last three road meetings with the Ducks, are looking for their first win in Anaheim since a 5-2 victory on Oct. 34, 2003. Prior to those losses, Buffalo had won five straight in Anaheim.
-Ryan Miller is 3-0-1 in his last four games with a .942 save percentage and a 1.69 goals against average.

THINGS YOU SHOULD KNOW
The Sabres are 3-1-0 against Pacific division teams this season… Christian Ehrhoff leads all Sabres with 19 points (5+14) against Anaheim; it is his highest total against any team… Buffalo is 23-3-2 when allowing two or fewer goals and 20-4-3 when scoring three or more… The Sabres are 15-8-5 with Tyler Ennis in the lineup this season and 6-1-3 when he records a point (33-9-7 in his career)… Buffalo is 2-3-0 all time on Feb. 29.
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POSTED ON Friday, 02.24.2012 / 11:41 AM
By Kevin Snow - Sabres.com (@kwsnow) / THE MORNING SKATE
TONIGHT’S LINES
Vanek-Roy-Pominville
Leino-Ennis-Stafford
Gerbe-Gaustad-Kaleta
Tropp-Ellis-Kassian

LINEUP NEWS
- Corey Tropp recalled from Rochester to replace the injured Brad Boyes (day-to-day)
- Robyn Regehr should be back in the lineup after leaving Tuesday’s game with an upper-body injury.
- Ryan Miller is expected to get the start in goal tonight

WHAT THEY WERE SAYING TODAY
Lindy Ruff (click to hear full audio)
Is Brad Boyes going to be able to play tonight?
No, it doesn’t look like it. He skated before, he’s close. But he won’t be able to play.

Is he possible for tomorrow?
He’s just day-to-day, so the obvious answer is possible.

Corey Tropp was injured during his last recall; is his game all the way back now?
He’s come back, played really well. I guess he had a heck of a game (on Wednesday) down in Rochester. He gave us a lot of good hockey. I thought he was one bright spot when he came up with his energy. I thought he was on top of the puck, a tough guy to play against. Really liked the way he played, a real high compete level.

Was the last win over Boston a combination of Buffalo playing well and they weren’t?
I think it was a little bit of both. We got a break early where Christian’s shot went off Campbell. And I think when you get up by a couple and a team starts chasing the game, you’ll get more chances. Not unlike the Pittsburgh game where we took advantage of some early opportunities and the team starts chasing the game. We’ve seen it too where we chase a game and it ends up being five or six against you.

Jason Pominville (click to hear full audio)
Is it safe to say that no game is bigger than the other now because each game is huge?
You're right. It's going to be that way for a little while, and it's been that way for a while as well. Every game is important, and getting even more important as we go on. We've played pretty good lately so we want to keep it rolling in that same direction.

Are you expecting a better game from the Bruins tonight?
I think we played pretty well last time, but at the same time, they might not have had their best night. That's why the score ended up being what it was. Again, they're one of the best teams in the league. They're a proven team with good depth. They're a big team that can skate and defend well, and they've got some offense. They're a good overall team so we'll have to make sure we're on our game.

TONIGHT’S GAME
BRUINS at SABRES

- Fourth of six meetings between the Sabres and Bruins this season.
- Last meeting: Buffalo defeated Boston, 6-0, in Buffalo on Feb. 8
- The teams meet next on Thursday, March 8 in Boston.
- The Sabres are 5-3-2 in their last 10 games vs. the Bruins; 6-1-3 at home.
- This is the 261st game all-time between Buffalo and Boston; Buffalo leads the series with a 113-108-39 record; Buffalo is 69-41-21 all-time against the Bruins at home.

STORYLINES
- The Sabres have two players entering tonight’s game on a four-game point streak: Derek Roy (2+5) and Tyler Myers (2+2). A point by Myers tonight would tie his career-best streak of five games.
- Tonight’s game is the last of four home games in an eight-day span for Buffalo. The Sabres are 2-0-1 in the first three games. After tonight, the team will fly to New York to face the Rangers in the first of five straight road games, before heading West on Monday for matchups with Anaheim, San Jose, Vancouver and Winnipeg.
- Despite sitting out Buffalo’s 6-0 win against Boston earlier this month, Thomas Vanek has scored in each of his last five games against the Bruins, totaling eight points (5+3) in those five games.
- Jason Pominville enters the night tied with Claude Giroux for third in the NHL with 39 points (15+24) in home games. The pair trails only Steven Stamkos (44) and Evgeni Malkin (41) for the lead.

THINGS YOU SHOULD KNOW
Buffalo has faced Boston more than any other team in franchise history, with 260 games played between the two clubs… Buffalo is 22-3-2 when allowing two or fewer goals and 20-4-3 when scoring three or more… The Sabres are 17-4-4 when Derek Roy records a point… The Sabres are 14-8-4 with Tyler Ennis in the lineup this season and 5-1-2 when he records a point (32-9-6 in his career)… Robyn Regehr left Tuesday’s game with an upper body injury.

BESTING THE BRUINS
Thomas Vanek has scored a goal in each of his last five games against the Bruins, registering eight total points in those games (5+3). Vanek’s career numbers of 46 points (35+21) in 42 games against Boston represent his highest goal and point totals against any NHL team. According to Elias Sports Bureau, his 46 points against the Bruins ranks him fifth among all active skaters in the NHL.
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POSTED ON Tuesday, 02.21.2012 / 11:57 AM
By Kevin Snow - Sabres.com (@kwsnow) / THE MORNING SKATE
The Sabres and Islanders close out their season series tonight at First Niagara Center in a 7 p.m. start. Buffalo is looking to win their second game in a row, and second consecutive over the Islanders. In their last meeting on February 4 at Nassau Coliseum, Buffalo rallied from a two-goal first period deficit to defeat New York 4-3 in a shootout. In that game, Ryan Miller became Buffalo's all-time leader in goalie wins with the 235th of his career.

WHAT THEY WERE SAYING

Lindy Ruff (click to hear full audio)
What was the key to your win over the Islanders in your last meeting?
I thought we played a strong first period, but we made a couple of real big mistakes that allowed them to jump on us and get the lead. We outshot them badly, and in the last 40 minutes we had to battle hard to get back in the game. We got that late goal from Gaustad that triggered the comeback. We’d like to play the same first period (tonight), but get rid of the mistakes.

Were you happy with the team’s pushback against Pittsburgh on Sunday?
You talk about momentum inside a game, and pockets of play that you’ve gotta grab momentum from. They had a couple of pockets where they fought back, and we answered by coming back with our own good pockets of play. I think we took some of their will away by the end of the game. I thought if it wasn’t for Fleury coming in and making four or five outstanding saves, we could’ve just put them away altogether.

TODAY’S GAME
ISLANDERS at SABRES
*This is the fourth and final meeting between the Sabres and Islanders this season.
*Last meeting: Buffalo defeated New York, 4-3 (SO), in New York on Feb. 4.
*The Sabres are 3-5-2 in their last 10 games vs. the Islanders; 5-4-1 at home.
*This is the 150th game all-time between Buffalo and New York; Buffalo leads the series with a 72-55-22 record. Buffalo is 40-23-11 against the Islanders at home.

STORYLINES
The Sabres have four players entering tonight’s game on a three-game point streak: Derek Roy (2+3), Tyler Ennis (2+1), Tyler Myers (1+2) and Nathan Gerbe (0+3). For Ennis and Gerbe, the three-game streaks tie the longest point streaks of their careers… Paul Gaustad has seven points in his last 10 games (3+4)… The Sabres got two points on Sunday afternoon after four straight games without a win, beating the Penguins by a score of 6-2 at home.

THINGS YOU SHOULD KNOW
Jason Pominville is ranked fourth in the NHL with 37 points (15+22) in home games; Pominville has 23 points (5+18) in 24 career games against the Islanders… Buffalo is 21-3-2 when allowing two or fewer goals and 20-4-3 when scoring three or more… The Sabres are 16-4-4 when Derek Roy records a point and 14-4-1 when Christian Ehrhoff records a point… In his career, Buffalo is 32-9-6 when Tyler Ennis records a point (5-1-2 this season).

GOOSE IS LOOSE
Paul Gaustad has converted on 20 percent of his shots in the last 10 games, scoring three goals on 15 shots. Gaustad, who has averaged a TOI of 16:28during that stretch, has also been hot on the draw recently. His faceoff percentage of 61.7 percent during those games has improved his season numbers to 56.8 percent, good for ninth in the league.
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POSTED ON Friday, 02.17.2012 / 1:02 PM
By Kevin Snow - Sabres.com (@kwsnow) / THE MORNING SKATE
LINEUP NEWS
- The team held a meeting this morning, with only a handful of players skating afterwards.
- Ryan Miller is expected to start in goal.
- Cody McCormick will miss his fourth straight game due to injury.

WHAT THEY WERE SAYING
Lindy Ruff (click to hear full audio)
What is the team’s spirit like after last night’s game?
Mentally, we obviously let that game slip away. Some of it was mental mistakes. And I’ll stick to the fact that our defense as a group didn’t play well in front of our goaltenders and that really hurt us.

How do you help them improve their mental toughness?
I think it’s by the repetition of staying with it. We showed some situation clips and some system clips that we got away from. I think part of it is on the forward front is the frustration in the lack of scoring. We got the 2-0 lead, and we got a little but away from our system. You still have to play well in your own end. You still have to make sure that when you’re forechecking, if a couple of guys get caught, the third guy has got to stay high. We cheated in a few situations and it cost us dearly.

Jason Pominville (click to hear full audio)
Despite the three straight losses, what gives you the belief that you can move up the standings?
That there’s still a lot of points available, there’s still a lot of games to be played. Like I said last night, it was probably one of worst efforts defensively all year. But we’re right back at it tonight against a team that’s right there with us battling for their lives. Tonight is a game we have to win. Losing three games in a row is just not good enough at any time of year, but even more so at this time.

T
ONIGHT’S GAME
CANADIENS at SABRES

-Fourth of six meetings between the Sabres and Canadiens this season.
-Last meeting: Buffalo defeated Montreal, 3-1, in Montreal on Jan. 31.
-The teams meet next on Monday, March 12 in Buffalo.
-The Sabres are 6-4-0 in their last 10 games vs. the Canadiens; 6-2-2 at home.
-This is the 251st game all-time between Buffalo and Montreal; the Sabres are 114-100-36 against the Canadiens (66-34-23 at home).

STORYLINES
-The Sabres have won their last six games against the Canadiens, dating back to Nov. 27, 2010 (3-1 loss). Buffalo’s record for most consecutive wins against Montreal is nine, from Oct. 30, 1983 to Oct. 11, 1984.
-Buffalo has already won all three of this season’s matchups between these teams in Montreal.
-Tonight’s meeting between the Sabres and Canadiens marks the 251st game between the two teams. The Sabres are 114-100-36 in these games. Buffalo has only faced Boston more times (260 GP).

THINGS YOU SHOULD KNOW
Jason Pominville enters tonight’s game on a six-game point streak (5+2)… Pominville is the sixth player in Sabres history to record 30 assists in six consecutive seasons… Buffalo is 20-3-2 when allowing two or fewer goals and 19-4-2 when scoring three or more.

LEADING THE WAY AGAINST MONTREAL
Derek Roy has four points (1+3) against the Canadiens this season and leads all Sabres with 34 (12+22) in 44 career games against the Habs. Three other players have three points in three games against Montreal this year: Christian Ehrhoff (1+2), Paul Gaustad (1+2) and Thomas Vanek (1+2).
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POSTED ON Thursday, 02.16.2012 / 2:07 PM
By Kevin Snow - Sabres.com (@kwsnow) / THE MORNING SKATE

TONIGHT’S LINES
Leino-Roy-Pominville
Gerbe-Ennis-Vanek
Stafford-Gaustad-Kaleta
Ellis-Boyes-Kassian

LINEUP NEWS
- Jhonas Enroth will start in goal tonight
- This will be Enroth’s first start since January 18 in Chicago.
- Thomas Vanek moves to RW with Tyler Ennis and Nathan Gerbe.

WHAT THEY WERE SAYING
Jhonas Enroth (click to hear full audio)
It’s been a few weeks in between starts, do you feel any extra pressure tonight?
I guess, but I like pressure. It’s always fun to play with pressure on you and when it’s a little bit more important. It’s a little bit easier to get ready for games with a lot of pressure on the line.

What do you remember about playing in Philadelphia during the playoffs?
I remember that it’s a really good atmosphere in here and the fans are crazy and real loud. It’s fun, and I’m really excited about playing here tonight.

Lindy Ruff (click to hear full audio)
Would you agree that Jhonas seemed to be getting his game back over his last few starts?
It did seem like it. I don’t think as a team we played that well in Chicago. And I look at the game he played on Long Island, that was a strong game. Obviously we’ll need to play a strong game in front of him.

What went into your decision to play him tonight instead of Friday at home?
It’s based a little bit on how we’ve played against Philly, and the numbers. Being at home is a better situation for us, but based on that conversation we decided to go in that direction.

TONIGHT’S GAME
SABRES at FLYERS
-Third of four meetings between the Sabres and Flyers this season.
-Last meeting: Philadelphia defeated Buffalo, 5-4 (OT), in Buffalo on Dec. 7.
-The Sabres are 5-4-1 in their last 10 games vs. the Flyers; 6-4-0 on the road.
-This is the 156th game all-time between Buffalo and Philadelphia; Buffalo trails the series with a 61-72-23 record. Buffalo is 23-43-13 on the road against the Flyers all-time.
-The two teams will meet for the final time this season on Thurs., Apr. 5 in Philadelphia.

STORYLINES
- Buffalo has won its last three on the road and will look to win four straight road games for the first time since winning the first four road games of the season (Oct. 8 to Oct. 20). They haven’t won more than four in a row on the road since winning their first 10 road games of the 2006-07 season.
- Jason Pominville leads all Sabres with 23 points (10+13) in 24 career games against the Flyers, including six (2+4) in his last four. Pominville also had four (1+3) points in five games against Philadelphia in last season’s playoffs.
- Pominville, who now has six 50-point seasons in his career, is the 11th player in Sabres history to record 50 points in six or more seasons. He joins Gilbert Perreault (16), Dave Andreychuk (10), Rick Martin (9), Phil Housley (8), Craig Ramsay (8), Rene Robert (7), Mike Foligno (6), Danny Gare (6), Don Luce (6) and Miroslav Satan (6).

THINGS YOU SHOULD KNOW
Jason Pominville enters tonight’s game on a five-game point streak (4+2)… Pominville is the sixth player in Sabres history to record 30 assists in six consecutive seasons… Buffalo is 20-3-2 when allowing two or fewer goals and 19-4-2 when scoring three or more… 18 of the Sabres’ last 23 games have been decided by two goals or less… The Sabres are 15-3-3 when Derek Roy records at least one point.


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