The Bruins and Buffalo Sabres will meet tonight for the third time this season as the B's travel to Western New York to take on their Northeast Divisions foes. The Bruins have won both contests so far this season, including a 3-2 overtime win at TD Garden last Tuesday.
The Bruins enter tonight's contest looking to bounce back from a 2-1 overtime loss to the Philadelphia Flyers on Saturday night, a game that ended with Marc Savard giving Mike Richards and the Flyers an early Christmas gift by turning over the puck on a no-look drop pass to no one that turned into the game-winner for the Flyers with three seconds left in overtime. The Bruins have dropped two of the last six games, but thanks to the charity point system are currently riding a six-game point streak that started back on the December 1st with a 3-0 win over the Flyers.
The Sabres have won three of their last five games (3-1-1), but are looking to rebound from a 5-2 loss to the Pittsburgh Penguins HSBC Arena on Saturday night. Buffalo currently sits in fourth placed in the Norteast Division with 28 points, two points up on Toronto in the basement and one point behind Ottawa for the third spot. The Sabres have dealt with some injuries to key players lately, but are expected to get a few players back tonight. Tim Connolly (groin) and Drew Stafford (shoulder), and Rob Niedermayer (knee) are expected to be back in the lineup tonight.
- With both teams off since Saturday, I would expect to Tim Thomas and Ryan Miller in net tonight.
- Tyler Seguin missed Saturday's game with flu-like symptoms, but has practiced with the team this week and appears ready to play. Seguin rotated with Daniel Paille on the left wing on a line with Marc Savard and Michael Ryder during Tuesday's practice at Ristuccia Arena in Wilmington.
Bruins Projected Lines & D-Pairs (based on Tuesday's practice):
Milan Lucic - David Krejci - Nathan Horton
Blake Wheeler - Patrice Bergeron - Mark Recchi
Tyler Seguin - Marc Savard - Michael Ryder
Brad Marchand - Gregory Campbell - Shawn Thornton
Zdeno Chara - Johnny Boychuk
Dennis Seidenberg - Steven Kampfer
Andrew Ference - Adam McQuaid
- Thomas Vanek is the Sabres' leading goal scorer with 13 goals on the season, while Derek Roy has recorded close to a point per game with 29 points in 30 contests.
- The Sabres are 10-8-3 with Ryan Miller in goal compared to 2-6-1 with either Patrick Lalime or Jhonas Enroth between the pipes.
- The Sabres have sent forwards Mark Mancari and Luke Adam back to the Portland Pirates.
- The game gets started at 7:00 PM ET and will air on NESN and 98.5 The Sports Hub.
- The Stanley Cup of Chowder Public Skate open thread starts right here at the usual start of a half hour before game time.
- For more on the Buffalo Sabres, check out SB Nation's Die By The Blade