FAN GUIDE: LEAFS VS. SABRES
Buffalo caps off a home-and-home series with Toronto tonight at 7:30 PM.
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SCHEDULE FOR TODAY
- 10:30 a.m.: Sabres meeting at First Niagara Center
- 5:30 p.m.: Labatt Blue Light Tailgate Tent Party opens.
- 5:30 p.m.: Arena doors open
- 7:30 p.m.: Game Time
- Tonight's game night program can be DOWNLOADED HERE.
- Tonight is the fourth meeting of the year between the Sabres and the Leafs. The Sabres trail in the series 2-1 with Toronto taking the last win on January 10 by a score of 2-0.
- The Sabres will be wearing their blue jerseys for tonight's game.
- The Labatt Blue Light Tailgate Tent Party kicks off at 5:30 p.m. today. Special guest Christian Ehrhoff will be in the tent at 6:00 PM. Tickets can be purchased by CLICKING HERE.
- Don't forget to purchase Alumni 50/50 tickets for tonight's game. Tickets can be purchased up to the fifteen minute mark of the second period.
MOE'S HOT PLAYERS
The Moe's Hot Players of the Night Paul Gaustad, Jason Pominville & Jordan Leopold.
If any of the three (3) selected hot players (announced pre-game) score a goal during that night's game, fans can redeem their free GameNight program coupon(page 20) for 50% off their entree tomorrow, at all participating Moe's restaurants. If any of the three (3) selected hot players score a hat trick during that night's game, fans can also redeem their free GameNight program for a free burrito at all participating Moe's restaurants.
SUBWAY SCORE 3 OR MORE
If the Sabres score three (3) or more goals during tonight's game, fans can redeem their game ticket for a free 6" Subway sub with a purchase of 30oz. drink tomorrow only at participating Subway restaurants.
Each time a Sabres player scores a hat trick inside First Niagara Center, New Era will make a monetary donation to charity per cap thrown onto the ice. Any hats thrown onto the ice and not claimed will be donated as well.
NEW ERA SCORE MORE
For every goal scored by the Sabres at that night’s game, fans can save a dollar per goal on their purchase of any cap tomorrow at the New Era Buffalo Store when they show their ticket stub.
GAME NOTES FOR TODAY'S GAME
|CLICK HERE TO DOWNLOAD
MAPLE LEAFS vs. SABRES
- This is the fourth of six meetings between the Sabres and Maple Leafs this season.
- Last meeting: Toronto defeated Buffalo, 2-0, in Toronto on Jan. 10.
- The Sabres are 4-6-0 in their last 10 games vs. the Maple Leafs; 8-2-0 on the road.
- This is the 182nd game all-time between Buffalo and Toronto; Buffalo leads the series with a 100-59-22 record. Buffalo is 59-25-7 at home against the Maple Leafs all-time.
- The two teams will meet next on March 31 in Toronto for the first half of a home-and-home series.
- Tonight’s game features four players who will take part in the 2012 NHL All-Star Weekend. Buffalo will be represented by Jason Pominville and Luke Adam, while Toronto will be represented by Phil Kessel and Joffrey Lupul.
- Buffalo’s last nine games have been decided by two goals or fewer. In all, 31 of the team’s 42 games have been decided by two or fewer goals. The Sabres are 14-12-5 in those games.
- The Sabres have points in their last six home games (3-0-3). They have not lost consecutive home games since Dec. 10 and 13 (0-1-1) and have not lost consecutive home games in regulation since Nov. 29 and Dec. 2.
- The Sabres have won nine of their last 10 home games vs. Toronto. Buffalo has not lost the home portion of a home-and-home series with the Maple Leafs since Dec. 20, 1970 (4-2 loss). The Sabres are 7-1-2 (including two ties) all-time in the home portion of these series.
- After tonight, Buffalo will play a season-high seven consecutive games on the road. Their next home game is on Feb. 1 vs. NYR.
Buffalo is 30-14-1 against the Maple Leafs since the lockout; the 30 wins are Buffalo’s highest win total against one team since the lockout, ahead of Boston (27) and Montreal (24)… Buffalo is 8-3-3 against Canadian teams this season (5-0-3 at home)… Tuesday’s matchup between the Sabres and the Leafs marked the first time since Jan. 9, 2009 vs. NYR that Buffalo did not have a power play… Buffalo has seen all but four players (Thomas Vanek, Jason Pominville, Luke Adam and Jhonas Enroth) who began the season with the team miss time with injury.
Vanek: 8 PPG (T-4th), 19 G (T-10th)
Pominville: 29 A (T-6th), 43 P (T-10th)
Gaustad: 56.4 FO% (10th)
Regehr: 102 (9th, defensemen)
Adam: 10 G (T-4th, rookies), 20 P (8th, rookies), 10 A (T-10th, rookies)
Gragnani: plus-12 (1st, rookies)
Thomas Vanek has 42 points (22+20) in 41 career games against Toronto… Jason Pominville has 40 points (14+26) in 43 career games against the Maple Leafs, including four (1+3) in three games this season… Ryan Miller is 25-13-0 all-time against Toronto with a 2.34 GAA and a .926 SV%; Miller has more wins (25) and shutouts (4) against the Maple Leafs than any other team; his 25 career wins against the Leafs lead all active goaltenders.
The last eight games between the Sabres and the Maple Leafs have been decided in regulation. Since the NHL added the overtime period in 1983-84, the most consecutive non-overtime games played between these two teams is nine, from April 16, 2006 to March 24, 2007.
The NHL announced Thursday that Jason Pominville and Luke Adam have been selected to represent the Buffalo Sabres at the 2012 NHL All-Star Weekend in Ottawa. Entering Thursday night’s games, Pominville tied for 10th in scoring among all NHL skaters with 43 points (14+29) and Adam tied for eighth among all rookies with 20 points (10+10). Both players will take part in All-Star weekend festivities for the first time in their career.
AHL HONORS FOR McNABB
Sabres defenseman Brayden McNabb has been selected to participate in the AHL All-Star game. McNabb has appeared in 19 games for the Rochester Americans this season, recording 10 points (1+9). In Buffalo, McNabb has four points (1+3) in 19 games.
LET'S PLAY TWO
Today’s game opens up Buffalo’s 12th of a league-high 21 sets of back-to-back games this season. The Sabres are 6-5-0 in the first game and 5-4-2 in the second. The Sabres have swept two sets, split seven and gotten one point in two. They will continue this set tomorrow at NYI.
VANEK RISING IN THE RECORD BOOKS
With his goal last Friday at CAR, Thomas Vanek passed Rene Robert for eighth-most goals in franchise history (223). Vanek needs one more goal to tie Miroslav Satan for seventh-most (224). Vanek’s goals per game total ranks sixth-best in franchise history among players with at least 100 goals. He trails only Pat LaFontaine, Rick Martin, Alexander Mogilny, Danny Gare and Dave Andreychuk in that category.
Sabres captain Jason Pominville has recorded a point in 31 of Buffalo’s 42 games this season, only having gone two straight contests without a point one time. The Sabres are 10-3-0 this season when Pominville scores.
NEW YEAR, NEW ATTITUDE
January has been Buffalo’s best month by a wide margin since 2008-09, with the Sabres going 26-12-5 (.663). Since the lockout,Buffalo has a 42-28-11 (.586) record in January.
POINT PER GAME
Two Buffalo skaters have averaged more than a point per game dating back to last season: Thomas Vanek has scored 61 points (28+33) in his last 59 regular season games, dating back to Mar. 5. Jason Pominville has scored 53 points (18+35) in his last 51 regular season games, dating back to Mar. 25, 2011 vs. FLA.
Thomas Vanek and Jason Pominville have recorded a point on the same goal 30 times this season, trailing only Daniel/Henrik Sedin (36) and Phil Kessel/Joffrey Lupul (31) for most by any duo in the league entering play Thursday. At least one of the two has recorded a point on 52 of the team’s 105 goals (49.5%).
Buffalo currently has three players on injured reserve and another two who sat out Tuesday night’s game. In all, 19 Sabres have missed at least one game with injury entering tonight's game. Buffalo’s total of 188 man games lost after 42 games is 90 more than they had at that point last season.
BUSY IN JANUARY
The Sabres play 12 games in January (3 home, 9 away). Their only break longer than two days is the All-Star break, when they have six days between games (Jan. 24 and 31). Eight of the 12 January games are against Eastern Conference opponents. After tonight’s game, they will be on the road for a season-high seven straight games.
Buffalo has dressed nine rookies this season, the highest total dressed by the team in a single season since 2006-07, when the team dressed 10. Buffalo dressed a franchise-record 12 rookies in the 1995-96 season. The Sabres’ 30 skaters and 33 total players dressed this season are the highest totals for the Sabres since they dressed exactly that many in the 2006-07 season.
Since Lindy Ruff was named Buffalo's head coach on July 21, 1997, there have been 170 coaching changes in the NHL. Ruff is the second-longest tenured coach in the four major professional sports leagues. Only Gregg Popovich, who began coaching the San Antonio Spurs in 1996, has been head coach of his team longer. Ruff has 544 wins as head coach of the Sabres, second-most by a head coach with a single franchise, trailing only Al Arbour (740). Ruff has more wins than any other coach with his first NHL team.
SABRES REAL-TIME STATS LEADERS
Hits: Regehr (102), Gaustad (76), Kaleta (57)
Blocked Shots: Regehr (63), Sekera/Leopold (50), Ehrhoff (48)
Shots: Vanek (122), Pominville (120), Stafford (111)
Download your copy of the official game notes by clicking here.
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