After a stretch of games in which the Sabres had earned nine out of 10 points, they have now lost two straight games and will try and snap the skid tonight against Philadelphia.
Fortunately for Buffalo, the Flyers have been having problems of their own recently. Although they stand 4th in the Eastern Conference, Philadelphia have won just one of their past six games and three of its last 10.
However, that still won’t make this an easy game for Buffalo. The Flyers have already taken the first two meetings of the season, both by one goal. Claude Giroux netted the game winner in overtime on December 7th.
The Sabres were out to a 3-0 lead in that game, but with a goal at 19:59 of the 1st period and three straight in the second, the Flyers quickly battled back and finished it off in overtime.
In the first meeting, Scott Hartnell gave his team a 3-2 win on November 2nd. Both of those games were played in Buffalo.
Giroux has five points (1 G, 4 A) against the Sabres this season.
The Sabres trail the 8th placed Maple Leafs by 10 points, but do have two games in hand. With Toronto idle tonight, Buffalo have a chance to make up some ground.
The recent two game skid has dampened playoff hopes and it is estimated that the Sabres can only lose approximately seven or eight games in regulation in order to move into that final playoff spot.
Tonight’s game is scheduled for 7 p.m. in Philadelphia.
After tonight, the Sabres will return home for a four game homestand. Following that, seven of the next eight will be on the road, including a trip to the west coast.