The Buffalo Sabres continue their trek out west tonight as they visit the Edmonton Oilers for the second meeting on the season between the two rebuilding clubs.
Both teams enter tonight’s contest at the very bottom on the standings, with the 29th-ranked Edmonton sitting just two points above the dead last Sabres. While the Oilers have endured yet another disappointing season thus far, they enter the game with some measure of success in recent outings. Edmonton dropped a close 2-1 decision to the Minnesota Wild in their last contest, and previously earned two hard-fought shootout victories over the Florida Panthers and Washington Capitals before there.
Buffalo hasn’t seen success on any night in 2015, and well before that. The Sabres will take to the ice tonight with a franchise-worst losing streak of 12 games, during which they’ve been outscored 53-17.
Had Buffalo not clawed their way back from a 3-0 deficit to win in a shootout over the New York Islanders back on December 27th, the losing streak could be even more disheartening than it already is. Buffalo is 1-16 in their last 17 contests including that victory that seems like a distant memory by now. Buffalo’s last regulation win was all the way back on December 11th against the Calgary Flames.
This current run of futility has dropped the Sabres into the very abyss of several categories across the NHL’s 30 teams. Buffalo sits at 30th in the entire league for goals per game (1.8), goals against (3.5), power play success percentage (10.5%), and penalty kill percentage (73.8%).
If there’s been any semblance of success, or at least improvement, in recent outings, it’s been Buffalo’s power play. Despite laying claim to the league’s worst stats on the man advantage, the Sabres have scored a power play goal in each of their last three contests, on a total of 8 opportunities altogether. Still, it’ll be a challenge to continue that trend tonight against Edmonton, who’s revitalized penalty kill has allowed just one goal on the Oilers’ last 16 penalties.
It will be a late night for fans planning to catch tonight’s game. Puck drop is scheduled for 9:30 PM EST from the Rexall Place in Edmonton. Fans can watch the contest on MSG or tune in through WGR 550.