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Beyond The Boards

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Tuesday, 03.08.2011 / 1:06 PM
By Rob Crean - Public Relations Director / BEYOND THE BOARDS
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BEYOND THE BOARDS
HALFWAY HOME

The Sabres’ season-long seven-game road trip surpassed the halfway point Sunday in Minnesota as Buffalo moved to 3-0-1 in the first four games, moving the team into a playoff spot for the first time since Oct. 10.  With that in mind, here are some facts and figures from the first four games of the roadie:

- Andrej Sekera is producing points in pairs.  The defenseman has notched two points in each game of the trip, as well as in the final game of the homestand, giving him a career-high five-game point streak (2-8-10).  He is the just the second defenseman in Sabres history to record five straight multi-point games and the first since John Van Boxmeer in 1981.   On the road trip alone, Sekera has one goal, seven assists and a +5 rating.  For his efforts, he was named the NHL’s Second Star for the week of Mar. 6.

Buffalo Sabres Brad Boyes (22), Andrej Sekera (44) and Jason Pominville (29) celebrate. (AP Photo/Matt Slocum)
- Steve Montador is a plus player.  Sekera’s new defense partner, Steve Montador, has registered a +3 rating in each of the last two games and has improved his team-leading mark to +20 for the season.  Montador has collected a goal and three assists on the road trip.

- Brad Boyes is paying instant dividends.  Boyes, acquired from St. Louis on Feb. 27, made his Sabres debut against the New York Rangers in the first game of the road trip and scored in each of his first two games in a Buffalo uniform.  He currently has four points (2-2-4) in four games with his new team.

- One-goal games have been the rule.  Three of the first four games of the trip have been decided by one goal, with two of them going to overtime.

- Offense has come from everywhere.  The team's 13 goals thus far on the trip have been scored by ten different players, with Boyes, Pominville and Stafford leading the way with two apiece.

- Jhonas Enroth works overtime again.   Enroth was summoned from Portland to start Sunday’s game at Minnesota and earned his fourth win of the season in the 3-2 overtime victory.  Enroth is now 4-2-1 on the season and all four of his wins have come in overtime or a shootout.  Five of Enroth’s seven starts this season have been decided in overtime or shootout.

- Rob Niedermayer is on the board.  The first-year Sabre and 17-year NHL veteran scored his first goal of the season Sunday in Minnesota.

- Reinforcements are on their way.  With the injury bug hitting Jochen Hecht, Mike Grier and Patrick Kaleta, the Sabres are looking to Portland for late-season help.  Mark Mancari played on Sunday after Grier went down with a lower-body injury in Saturday’s game, while Hecht missed both weekend games with an upper-body injury.  Meanwhile, Kaleta took a slap shot to the leg at the end of the second period in St. Paul, leading to the recalls of Mark Parrish and Luke Adam.

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