Buffalo Sabres (13-16-2) at
Winnipeg Jets (15-10-6)
1. How will Mikhail Grigorenko fare in his big re-debut?
Grigorenko is back in the Sabres lineup for the first time this season thanks to an injury to Torrey Mitchell, and he'll be centering Drew Stafford and Nicholas Deslauriers if the practice lines are to be believed. It's a big moment for the Sabres prospect, who was bounced all over the map in his first two years, only to finally find his rightful place this season in Rochester.
I'll be keeping my eyes all over Grigorenko tonight to see how, or if, he looks different from his previous stints in Buffalo. Our own Stephanie Delio has written a lot about Grigorenko's improvement this year (as have many others) and everyone seems to be impressed with how he's turned the mismanagement of yesteryear into motivation and results in his first AHL campaign. Here's hoping.
2. How will the new lines perform?
During the Sabres recent mega-win streak, their lines and pairings have remained almost exactly the same, save for the occasional injury or two. The red-hot top line is still together, but according to today's morning skate, Stewart and Hodgson are both back to the fourth line, Foligno will now center the second line, and Deslauriers get a promotion to play with Grigorenko and Stafford.
3. Will Josh Gorges play tonight?
Gorges is a game-time decision, and has been a solid partner for Tyler Myers on the ice. Of course, Zadorov and Ristolainen are solid partners for anyone, but Gorges presence would take Meszaros off the ice.
Projected BUF Lineup
Deslauriers - Grigorenko - Stafford
Zadorov - Ristolainen
Goal: Michal Neuvirth