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Sabres vs. Blue Jackets preview: Corey Tropp returns to Buffalo, and he brought red-hot Columbus with him

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Columbus is fighting for a playoff spot in the East, while the Sabres are fighting to maintain the worst record in the league.

Jen Fuller

Corey Tropp once held in regard as one of the young players who would help the Sabres slowly rebuild over the next few seasons. He was fast, gritty, and had just enough skill to get folks excited about his future on Buffalo's third or fourth line.

Tonight, Tropp returns as an opponent, as he makes his first trip back to Buffalo since Columbus claimed him off waivers earlier his season.

The Blue Jackets come to town on a five game winning streak, and will face a Sabres squad coming off of an shootout loss to Toronto on Wednesday. Columbus recently welcomed Nathan Horton back to the lineup after having offseason shoulder surgery, and the Jackets are fighting for the #8 seed in the East, which they'll own if they win tonight.

The Sabres are welcoming back some reinforcements of their own, as Marcus Foligno returns to the lineup tonight just in time to face his older brother Nick. The return of Cody Hodgson to the lineup has spurred the Sabres offense into mega-overdrive, and has seen them score six goals (!) in their last two games.

Game #47

Buffalo Sabres (13-27-6) at Columbus Blue Jackets (23-20-4)

Puck Drop - 7:00pm EST - First Niagara Center - Buffalo, NY
TV
- MSG, FS-O | Radio - WGR 550-AM
SBNation Blue Jackets Blog
- The Cannon

Three Questions

1. Will the Sabres suddenly "explosive" offense keep producing?
Buffalo has scored eight goals in their past three games after four total tallies in heir previous four games, thanks in part tot the efforts from Cody Hodgson, Tyler Ennis, and Christian Ehrhoff.

2. Which Foligno brother will have the better night?
Marcus Foligno will return from injury tonight to face his older brother Nick Foligno, a winger for the Blue Jackets. Nick is certainly having the better year, with 12 goals and 14 assists, while younger brother Marcus has five goals and six assists.

3. Who will break their scoring slump?
While their offense has picked up recently, the Sabres have a number of forwards currently experiencing a point drought. Zemgus Girgensons hasn't registered a point in eight games, Brian Flynn has been dry for eleven contests, Ville Leino hasn't scored in his last seven, and the aforementioned Foligno has been held down for nine games.

Projected BUF Lines

Moulson - Ennis - Stafford
Ott - Hodgson - Leino
Flynn - Foligno - Girgensons
Scott - Konopka - Ellis

Ehrhoff Pysyk
WeberMyers
McNabb - McBain

Goal: Ryan Miller

Scratches/Injuries: Sulzer, Tallinder, Porter, McCormick, Omark, D'Agostini