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Sabres at Penguins Preview: Both Teams Missing Top Scorers Vanek, Crosby; Last Game As A Sabre For Some?

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The Sabres take on the Penguins in Pittsburgh, in what could be the last game in a Sabres uniform for some long-time franchise cornerstones.

Justin K. Aller

The Pittsburgh Penguins and Buffalo Sabres are franchises currently at opposite ends of the spectrum. Pittsburgh is a modern dynasty loading up for another deep playoff run, while Buffalo is just now entering what could be a massive rebuilding project. Pittsburgh enters this game having won 15 straight, while the Sabres haven't won 15 games all year. Pittsburgh is in first place in the East, and Buffalo is in 13th, just three points out of last place. Yes, it doesn't look good for Buffalo, but that, as they say, is why we play the games.

This is also the last game before Wednesday's trade deadline, and the names of Thomas Vanek, Jason Pominville, and Ryan Miller have all been floated out there in Rumor Land. They'll have the specter of the deadline looming over them as they play tonight, but the big question is - could tonight be the last time we see one or more of them in a Sabres uniform?

Game #37

Buffalo Sabres (13-17-6) at Pittsburgh Penguins (28-8-0)

Puck Drop - 7:30pm - CONSOL Energy Center - Pittsburgh, PA
TV - NBCSN, ROOT | Radio - WGR 550-AM
SBNation Penguins Blog - PensBurgh (Please play nice if you're going to visit.)

Game Notes

Thomas Vanek is still out for the Sabres, missing his fourth game in a row as he recovers from an upper body injury. Ryan Miller will be in net tonight, and will break the franchise record for most games played as a Sabre that he currently is tied for with Dominik Hasek. Luke Adam and Adam Pardy, both recalled from Rochester yesterday, will be in the lineup tonight - Adam for the injured Ville Leino, and Pardy for the recently traded Robyn Regehr.

The Penguins, meanwhile, will be without NHL scoring leader Sidney Crosby as he recovers from his recent jaw surgery. They will also be without defenseman Paul Martin and Kris Letang, both out with injuries.

Projected Buffalo Lines

Ott - Hodgson - Pominville
Stafford - Ennis - Gerbe
Flynn - Porter - Foligno
Adam - Hecht - Kaleta

Ehrhoff - Myers
Weber - Sekera
Pysyk - Pardy

Goal: Ryan Miller

Scratches/Injuries: Vanek, Leino, Sulzer

Projected Pittsburgh Lines

Kunitz - Kennedy - Dupuis
Iginla - Malkin - Neal
Morrow - Sutter - Cooke
Glass - Jeffrey - Adams

Orpik - Eaton
Murray - Niskanen
Engelland - Despres