EA NHL ’17 simulation

We decided to try something new this season based on some feedback from our viewers. Using EA’s NHL ’17 for the PlayStation 4, we simulated the entire 2016-17 season to see where they had the Sabres finishing.

We loaded the Sabres starting lineup into the system and let it run from there. Here’s a look at how it turned out.

Final record: 42-34-6, 90 points

The Sabres finished with a respectable record, but they missed the playoffs by four points as the New York Islanders took the final spot with 94. Losing streaks of four and seven in the first two months of the season hindered their chances, and despite a great second half, it was too much to overcome.

The Sabres missed the playoffs with 90 points, but the San Jose Sharks got in with 84 in the Western Conference.

The Detroit Red Wings‘ missed the playoffs for the first time in two and a half decades.

(Click the photos below to enlarge)


Leading goal scorer: Evander Kane

It looks as if Evander Kane proved what he can do on the ice as he led the team with 31 goals. Jack Eichel was right behind him with 25 and Tyler Ennis was next with 21. Both Kyle Okposo and Sam Reinhart finished with 17.

(Click the photo to enlarge)


Leading point scorer: Jack Eichel

Eichel finished the season with 68 points, a bit higher than his 56 last season. Kyle Okposo was next on the team with 62 and then Ryan O’Reilly with 61.

(Click the photo to enlarge)



Robin Lehner was a workhorse for Buffalo, playing 59 games and posting a 30-21-3 record. Even with injuries turned on, he made it through the year unscathed. Lehner posted a goals against average of 2.34 and a save percentage of .920. He also had one shutout.

Anders Nilsson proved to be a respectable backup, going 11-13 in his games with a 2.59 GAA and a .914 save percentage. He also added a surprising four shutouts.


While the Sabres didn’t make it, we kept simulating and saw the Dallas Stars defeat the New York Islanders in six games for the Stanley Cup. Here’s a shot of the playoff tree:

(Click the photo to enlarge)


The Washington Capitals got some revenge on the Pittsburgh Penguins with a first round win, and the Islanders lost just two games in the first three rounds.

What do you think of these results?

Will Eichel top 68 points? Will Lehner hit 30 wins? Leave a comment below with your thoughts!

Kevin Freiheit
I founded Buffalo Hockey Central in 2008 and have poured hours and hours into this site. Luckily, we have a great team of writers and designers who have helped keep this up and running despite a ton of out-of-pocket costs. We do this because we enjoy it, and we're desperate to see the Sabres win the Cup someday, but they have to make the playoffs first.
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