It’s way too early into the season and easy to get carried away, but how fun has this Sabres team been to watch?
They pulled off an exciting 5-4 overtime-thriller on Wednesday night thanks to Colin Miller setting up Marcus Johansson for a one-timer.
Through four games, Buffalo is leading the NHL in goals scored with 18. That’s not a stat many would have thought they’d see this season. After a four-point game, Jack Eichel is tied for 2nd in the league with 7 points. Rasmus Dahlin is right there with him.
Victor Olofsson is tied for the league-lead with 4 power-play goals.
1. Zibanejad – 8
1. McDavid – 8
3. EICHEL – 7
3. DAHLIN – 7
1. McDavid – 6
1. DAHLIN – 6
1. OLOFSSON – 4
1. Neal – 4#Sabres
— BuffaloHockeyCentral (@BHCdotcom) October 10, 2019
As a team, the Sabres are 2nd in the league with a power-play percentage of 53.3%. The New York Rangers are ahead of them at 60%, but they’ve only gone 3-for-5 with the man advantage while the Sabres have gone 8-for-15.
I created a chart recently that compares this season’s point total to each of the past four seasons. Through four games, this is the highest Buffalo has been in the past five seasons. You can view that whole chart here.
CAN THEY KEEP THIS UP?
There’s no denying the fact that the power play has been the biggest reason for success. Nearly half of the team’s goals have come with the man advantage. Now there’s no way they can keep up to anything near a 50% conversion rate, but that doesn’t mean they can’t own one of the best power plays in the league.
More importantly, the Sabres are going to need secondary scoring. They’ve been able to play all four lines with confidence, but they’re going to have to see those lines have success while at even strength.
Good morning, my friends.
PHI is the NHL's best team.
BUF is close.
VAN's up there now too.
— Sean Tierney (@ChartingHockey) October 10, 2019
WHAT’S ON TAP?
We’ll see if Buffalo can continue to rack up points. They’ll host the Florida Panthers on Friday and the Dallas Stars on Monday afternoon. After that, they’ll make a trip to the west coast to take on Anaheim, Los Angeles, and San Jose. Then they’ll play the Sharks again at KeyBank Center two days later.