⏰ 7 p.m. ? MSG ? WGR550
BUF Stats TOR 31-32-9 Record 43-25-5 20-12-4 Home 22-14-1 11-20-5 Away 21-11-4 5-3 Shootouts 0-0 200 Goals For 259 233 Goals Against 219 18th PP Rank 7th 9th PK Rank 11th
After a couple of off days, the Sabres are back in action tonight against the Calgary Flames, a team that they have done very well against on home ice. Buffalo are 9-1-1 against Calgary on home ice since 2000.
Season series: This will be the first of two games against Calgary this season. The other will come on the road in January. They split the season series last year with a game a piece, but Calgary did get three of four points since the Sabres won theirs in overtime.
Buffalo notes: The Sabres have gotten off to a much better start than fans have been used to. After 11 games, they have a 6-4-1 record and have played with much more confidence this season. They’ve gotten off to poor starts in recent years, so this team is showing signs that maybe things are finally changing for the better.
After three straight victories, the Sabres are coming off an overtime loss to the Columbus Blue Jackets. They erased a two-goal deficit in the third period, but Artemi Panarin scored just 31 seconds into overtime.
“Being on the road and being down two against a good hockey team, we found a way to earn a point. We’ll learn from the mistakes that we made, but we’ve got to take credit where credit’s due. I thought we did a terrific job battling back on the road to get a point.” – Phil Housley
Flames notes: The Flames come in with a 6-5-1 record and are coming off a game last night against the Toronto Maple Leafs in which they won by a 3-1 score. They had dropped three straight prior to that, including a 9-1 game against the Pittsburgh Penguins and a 3-2 overtime loss against the Washington Capitals.
Ryan Pike, Flames writer for FlamesNation.ca and TheHockeyWriters offered some insight from Calgary’s standpoint heading into tonight’s game:
The Flames have been deploying a top nine mix, with the traditional top six mixed together with Austin Czarnik, Sam Bennett and rookie Dillon Dube. It’s added some speed to the mix, but hasn’t resulted in a ton of additional scoring yet. The fourth line is Michael Frolik, Derek Ryan and Garnet Hathaway, who have been solid if unspectacular. Barring Bill Peters making changes, the third defensive pairing features a pair of rookies in Juuso Valimaki and Rasmus Andersson. They seem a prime target for line-matching targeting by the Sabres at home.
Starting goaltenders: David Rittich is expected to get the start in net for Calgary tonight. He’ll be the fourth consecutive back up goaltender that the Sabres will face.
— Derek Wills (@Fan960Wills) October 30, 2018