After dropping four straight games all by just one goal, the Buffalo Sabres will take to the ice in hopes of getting back in the win column. After the team’s modest losing streak and not playing for three days, the Sabres still find themselves only five points behind the league-leading Tampa Bay Lightning.
Buffalo notes: The game against Philadelphia will be the second in a four-game homestand with contests with the Los Angeles Kings and Arizona Coyotes coming up next week. The Sabres are 7-0-2 in their last nine home games and are looking forward to their schedule easing up a bit. During their four-game losing streak their opponents had a combined 71-33-7 record. Sam Reinhart remains one of the hottest players in the league. Reinhart has a goal in four straight games and 18 points in his last 16 games.
Philadelphia notes: The visit to KeyBank Center by the Flyers on Saturday afternoon will be the first game of a five-game road trip for the team. The Flyers are struggling as of late losers of 7 out of their last 9 games. Early last week Flyers president Paul Holmgren started making some changes with the organization, firing General Manager Ron Hextall. If the team doesn’t start to right the ship soon, Head coach Dave Hakstol could be next on the chopping block.
Season series: The matchup with the Flyers Saturday afternoon marks the second of three meetings this year between the clubs. The first meeting was win number seven in Buffalo’s 10 game winning streak. The Sabres exploded with a four-goal first period and eventually went on to win that game by a 5-2 score. The final meeting in the regular season will take place on February 26th when the Sabres will travel to the Wells Fargo Center in downtown Philadelphia.
Starting goalies: Expect Carter Hutton to get the start for Buffalo with the net minder having the last four days off. Anthony Stolarz should get the call for the Flyers.