Time is now for a push

By
Updated: January 21, 2017

After an exciting victory on Friday night against the Detroit Red Wings, the Sabres are right back at it tonight.

They begin a four game road trip, with the first stop being in Montreal. As we published at the beginning of 2017, the month of January will dictate the direction for the remainder of the season.

So far, the Sabres have gone 5-3-1 this month. The five wins are tied for the most in any month this season and they still have four games to play.

If they think their playoff hopes can become realistic, now is the time for them to come together and find a way to have a successful road trip.

They’ll face Montreal, Nashville, Dallas and Montreal once more in these next four games.

A quick look at the standings doesn’t look promising, but with the NHL’s point system, the Sabres are actually not that far out of it:

Rank
Team
Div
GP
REC
PTS
Atlantic Division Leaders:
1A7643-24-995
2A7541-25-991
3A7536-24-1587
Metropolitan Division Leaders:
1M7550-17-8108
2M7548-20-7103
3M7546-18-11103
Wild Card leaders:
1M7746-26-597
2A7640-30-686
-------------------------------------------------------------------
3A7537-29-983
4M7535-28-1282
5M7534-27-1482
6M7636-32-880
7A7633-32-1177
8A7732-33-1276
9A7631-33-1274
10M7627-35-1468

That’s five points out of a current playoff spot. A win against the Canadiens tonight could put Buffalo just three points out of a playoff spot. It might take some help from some other teams, but it’s certainly a possibility.

The bigger issue is that the Sabres have struggled to win multiple games in a row, and their longest actual winning streak is only three games.

Now without Jake McCabe, there’s even more stress on a defense without Dmitry Kulikov and Josh Gorges.

And after a strong performance from Anders Nilsson, can the goaltending hold steady?

It’s a crazy notion how quickly gaining four points in two nights could move you up the standings, but the Sabres could see it become a reality with a win tonight.

Fans haven’t seen playoffs in years and just getting involved in a battle for the last spot would create excitement. They’ve dropped important games already, but there’s still time to rectify it. They cannot keep wasting opportunities.

Developing some sort of consistency has been a problem all season long. We’ll see if they can get two points in Montreal tonight.


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