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TURNBULL IN FOR INJURED KALETA

Wednesday, 03.21.2012 / 12:05 PM
By Kevin Snow - Sabres.com (@kwsnow) / THE MORNING SKATE
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THE MORNING SKATE
TURNBULL IN FOR INJURED KALETA

LINEUP NEWS
- Patrick Kaleta will not play; he is day-to-day with an upper body injury
- Travis Turnbull will make his NHL debut on the RW with Boyes & McCormick
- Ryan Miller gets the start in goal; 22-8-6 all-time vs. MTL; 2.26 GAA & .923 save%
- Tyler Myers returns to the lineup after serving his three-game suspension.
- Nathan Gerbe remains day-to-day with an upper body muscle strain.

WHAT THE COACH SAID TODAY
Lindy Ruff (listen to the full audio)
Is Pat Kaleta suffering from that neck injury again?
No; nothing to do with the neck. He’ll be out. He suffered an upper body injury. He’s probably more than day-to-day.

Are you going to go with seven defensemen tonight or will you use Travis Turnbull?
Turnbull’s gonna play, so we’ll go with six.

What have you liked about Turnbull’s game in Rochester?
It’s more of what we’ve got from Ron (Rolston) in Rochester. Replacing Patty with Turnbull, we’re replacing the same type of player: agitator, scrappy kid that plays on the edge. He’s really played hard down there. You bring him in, and we were looking for a fourth line role, there were a couple of choices but Ron thought he’d be the best guy for us. It’s sort of a win-win. He’s got good hands and good speed. A real competitive kid. He’ll fit right in where he’s playing.

TONIGHT’S GAME
CANADIENS at SABRES

- Sixth and final meeting between the Sabres and Canadiens this season.
- Last meeting: Buffalo defeated Montreal, 3-2 (OT), in Buffalo on March 12.
- The Sabres are 7-2-1 in their last 10 games vs. the Canadiens; 6-2-2 at home.
- 253rd game all-time between Buffalo and Montreal; the Sabres are 115-100-37 against the Canadiens (67-34-24 at home).

STORYLINES
- Buffalo enters the day 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 of eighth in the Eastern Conference.
- The Sabres have gotten a point in six of their last seven games (4-1-2) and 14 of their last 16 (10-2-4).
- Buffalo has points in their last seven home games (5-0-2). Their best stretch this year was 10 games, from Dec. 13 to Feb. 10 (6-0-4).
- The Sabres are 11-5-4 against the Northeast Division this season, including a 4-0-1 record against the Canadiens. Buffalo has gone 7-0-1 in their last seven against the Habs, dating back to Nov. 27, 2010.
- Derek Roy has six points (1+5) against the Canadiens this season and leads all Sabres with 36 points (12+24) in 46 career games against the Habs.

THINGS YOU SHOULD KNOW
Tyler Myers returns from a three-game suspension tonight… Buffalo is 27-3-2 when allowing two or fewer goals and 25-4-4 when scoring three or more… Jason Pominville is ranked fourth in the league with 42 points (16+26) in 36 home games.

JUST HOW HE DREW IT UP
Drew Stafford has nine points (2+7) in his last four games and is one game away from tying the longest point streak of his career (4x, last: 10/13/09 vs. DET to 10/24/09 at TBL). The most prolific five-game stretch of Stafford’s career saw him notch 10 points (9+1) from Feb. 5 to Feb. 15, 2011. The only other time he had at least nine points in five games was from Jan. 18 to Jan. 29, 2008 (5+4).

WORKING OVERTIME
The Sabres lead the league with 21 overtime games, including an NHL-high 14 at home. Entering tonight, Buffalo has seen four straight home games (3-0-1) go to extra time for the fourth time in franchise history (last: Jan. 27 to Feb. 25, 1998). The franchise record for most overtime home games in a season was set in 1990-91, when the Sabres went 2-2-12 in 16 games.

ENNIS IS ON FIRE
Tyler Ennis has points in each of his last five games (4+5), tying his career-best point streak (last: Feb. 4 to March 3, 2012). Ennis now has 17 points (7+10) in his last 17 games. The Sabres are 12-1-5 when Ennis records a point this season and 39-9-9 when he tallies a point in his career.

MAKING THE JUMP
Marcus Foligno has seven points (5+2) and a plus-6 rating in five games since his recall on March 9. Prior to this recall, Foligno had only played one NHL game. According to Elias Sports Bureau, Phil Housley (9) and Ray Sheppard (7) are the only other Sabres in franchise history to have scored seven or more points in their first six career games. Among active NHL players, only two others (Evgeni Malkin and Teemu Selanne) had five or more goals in their first six games.

FINISHING STRONG AFTER THE BREAK
Buffalo is 539-400-185 (.562) all-time in games after the All-Star break. This includes a record of 88-47-23 (.630) in those games since the lockout. The Sabres are 13-5-5 (.674) since the 2012 NHL All-Star Game. These totals do not include games after breaks for the Olympic Games.

BATTLING BACK
The Sabres began the day on Feb. 17 in 14th place in the Eastern Conference and 10 points out of a playoff spot after a 7-2 loss at PHI the night before. Since then, the team has gone 10-2-4. Only one team in NHL history has overcome a 10 point deficit this late in the season, when the New York Islanders rallied from a 10-point hole on Feb. 18, 1994 to snag eighth place in the conference.

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