In an effort to not sound like a broken record, the Sabres are looking for something other than what they have been getting thus far in the season against the Minnesota Wild. In that quest, they have a familiar face returning to Buffalo for the first time in Jason Pominville. If you forgot, Pominville left at the trade deadline last year in return for Matt Hackett and Johan Larsson. Since Pominville left, he has had five goals and five assists in 15 games. He'll also be with the Wild for the foreseeable future as they gave him a five year extension when the season started.
The Sabres haven't improved since he has left, going 8-9-1 in the 18 games since the trade. The worst case scenario for the team would to get blown out again on national television and have the former player score a hat trick in his return. Game time is 7:30 on the NBC Sports Network
Three Things To Watch For
1.) What will the reception be for Pominville?
This is always a tricky question, but in this case it should be positive. Pominville was captain when he left and didn't leave on his own terms. He also really didn't slag the team on his way out the door so the fans should receive him well. I do wonder if the team will acknowledge his existence at any point during the game.
2.) Will Pominville score against the Sabres?
It wouldn't surprise me if he did as kind of a way to stick it to the former team.
3.) Can the Sabres find any sort of scoring?
The Sabres are averaging 1.00 goals/game, the worst in the NHL, and they don't show any signs of improving in that area. The last period against the Chicago Blackhawks showed that the team has something to give, but they haven't been able to put it together for a full 60 minutes. Only once has the Sabres scored more than one goal in a game and that came against the Lightning. The Wild are one of the stingiest teams in the league, allowing 2.2 goals/game. Trying to find an offensive explosion may be tough.