The Buffalo Sabres will battle the Pittsburgh Penguins at the Consol Energy Center tonight for their final road game of the season. In a game that was postponned from Saturday night due to the rescheduling of the Boston vs. Pittsburgh game, and all the havoc associated with the Boston Marathon bombing suspects, the Sabres will look to snap their two game losing streak and grab a win against the hottest team in the league.
The Buffalo Sabres showed Monday night that just because the New york Rangers eliminated them from the playoffs over the weekend, they are not going to roll over for their last three games. Buffalo played a solid game against the Jets and had their fair share of opportunities to tie the game up late in the contest. Jhonas Enroth had an outstanding game for the Sabres making 37 saves and Mikhail Grigorenko proved why he deserved the Rochester call-up. Grigorenko had arguably his best game as a Sabre and had several descent scoring chances.
The Pittsburgh Penguins have been on an amazing streak over the past two months with a six game winning streak, compiling a 21-2 record, and securing home ice advantage throughout the Eastern Conference playoffs. The late season scenario couldn’t have worked out any better for the Penguins. After defeating the Boston Bruins Saturday afternoon and gaining the top spot in the East, the Pens were afforded the luxury of resting some of their injured players such as Sidney Crosby, James Neal, and Evgeni Malkin. The Penguins haven’t missed a beat with a few of their top guns sidelined. Chris Kunitz has remained consistent all season and leads the team with his 21 goals and is second in points with 49. Newly acquired Brenden Morrow has been equally productive as of late picking up 5 goals and 10 points in his last 6 games.
Special teams should have a significant role in determining the outcome of tonight’s contest. While the Sabres have struggled all season with their powerplay and penalty killing (both in the bottom third of the league), the Penguins find themselves on top of the league with the man advantage.
This is the third meeting of the season between the two clubs with each team winning on the others home ice. In the February 17th match up, the Pens took a 4-3 victory and on April 2nd the Sabres snapped the Penguins 15 game winning streak with a convincing 4-1 win. The game is scheduled for a 7:35 faceoff and can be seen on NHLN and MSG.