Buffalo plays host to Philadelphia today, for the second of four meetings between the clubs this season. Philadelphia came out on top in the first meeting, a 4-1 decision in late November.
Despite their struggles on the road the Sabres have been successful as of late on home ice. They have earned at least a point in each of their last 8 home games, going 6-0-2 in that stretch.
Buffalo has had a hard time finding the back of the net on a consistent basis, however got a boost in that department with the return of Cody Hodgson versus Washington. Hodgson found the score sheet with an assists on Tyler Ennis’ power play goal, and will need to continue producing for the team to have continued success. Although there is a limited sample size to work with, it is easy to see that the Sabres have relied on his offensive touch when it is available. He averages .59 points per game (34 GP). This is second only to Matt Moulson who averages .64 points per game (42 GP). No team wants to rely on only a small group of players to contribute however Buffalo will have to take it where they can get it throughout this rebuilding process.
Philadelphia will look to rebound off of a poor weekend that saw them lose the last two and give up 10 goals in the process. The goal tending issues that seem to have been forever plaguing the Flyers are starting to subside, with Steve Mason coming out the victor. He currently sits with a 2.46 GAA and a .918 SV%. When compared with Ryan Miller (2.58 GAA, .928 SV%), Mason proves that games can be won without an “all-star” caliber goal tender, depending on the quality of hockey that is being played in front of them.
The Sabres will be without injured players McCormick and Tallinder as well as missing Tyler Myers. Myers will serve the third, and final game of his suspension as Buffalo takes on Philadelphia on Tuesday night. Drew Stafford is questionable and could make his return against the Flyers.
It is also interesting to point out that the home team has won the last six times that Buffalo and Philadelphia have faced off.
Puck will drop at 7:30 p.m. The game can be seen on NBCSN and TSN.