The Week Ahead For The Buffalo Sabres

Justin K. Aller

The Buffalo Sabres have three chances this week to earn their first points of the 2013-14 season.

The Buffalo Sabres are still looking for their first win of the 2013 season and they have three opportunities to do it in the upcoming week, including two in front of the home fans. Here's a look at upcoming schedule in the week ahead

Tuesday October 8th vs. Tampa Bay

The Tampa Bay are 1-1 on the short season and won their first game of the season on Saturday night against the Chicago Blackhawks. The Lightning have had a rough schedule to start the season with games against the Stanley Cup Finalists. They opened the season with a 3-1 loss to the Bruins and defeated the Blackhawks 3-2 on Saturday.

With the Lightning, the two players that always have to be watched are Steven Stamkos and Martin St. Louis. Stamkos is still every bit as dangerous of a scorer and has 18 points in 19 career games against the Sabres. He has been held scoreless thus far, but it is only a matter of time that he'll find the back of the net. Martin St. Louis was named the captain of the team when Vincent Lecavalier was bought out by the team and has a goal and an assist on the young season.

Thursday October 10th vs. Columbus

These aren't your parents Blue Jackets as they have made some improvements over the last season or two. The team sits at 1-1 on the season and have far more scoring options than they have in year's past. Add to that a goaltender that can actually make saves in Sergei Bobrovsky and the Blue Jackets aren't as easy of a push over as they have been in year's past.

The top scorer for the Blue Jackets is Marian Gaborik, who was acquired from the New York Rangers at the trade deadline last year. Gaborik scored 12 goals and 27 points in 47 games played last year. He already has one goal on the season which came against the Calgary Flames.

Saturday October 12th at Chicago

The Blackhawks are always a tough team to play against and that holds true when they play at home. A Saturday night crowd at the United Center should be one of the louder crowds to play against and the last time the Sabres ventured to Chicago it resulted in a 6-2 loss that came in the middle of a five game losing streak in 2011.

You should know the names to watch in Chicago start with Jonathan Toews and Patrick Kane. That duo accounted for 46 goals and 103 points in 47 games each last season. Kane already has two goals on the season while Toews only has one assist.

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