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Sabres at Blackhawks Preview: Buffalo looks to end losing streak

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The Sabres get another opportunity to end their losing sreak.

Kevin Hoffman-USA TODAY Sports

Game #41

Buffalo Sabres (15-21-4) at
Chicago Blackhawks (25-13-4)

Puck Drop: 8:30 pm EST | United Center | Chicago, IL
TV: MSG, Comcast Sports Net- Chicago | Radio: WGR 550
SB Nation Blackhawks Blog: Second City Hockey

Three Questions

1. Can the first pairing answer the bell?

Dan Bylsma said he wasn't trying to send a message when Rasmus Ristolainen was the extra defenseman yesterday, explaining that he just hoped to get Zach Bogosian practice on his off-side. Yet, he still did call out the top air a bit. Josh Gorges agreed, saying that he and Rasmus have been good, but they need to be great. Will they be able to shut down the Blackhawks' high-powered offense?

2. Can the Sabres score without Jack Eichel or Ryan O'Reilly on the ice?

The Sabres roster isn't scoring unless the team's top-two scorers are on the ice. Can the Sabres get any scoring from the bottom two lines, featuring some goal scorers who have seriously under-achieved this season (Foligno, Larsson, Gionta and Moulson)? This may be a question until it happens.

3. Can the Sabres end their five-game losing steak?

The Sabres haven't won a game since Dec. 25, pushing them down to only one point ahead of the last place Columbus Blue Jackets. Chicago is a tough team to face when you're trying to reverse that trend, but hey, any team can win on any given night, right?

Projected BUF Lines

Kane - O'Reilly - Reinhart
Girgensons - Eichel - McGinn
Foligno - Larsson - Gionta
Moulson - Schaller - Legwand

Gorges - Ristolainen
Bogosian - McCabe
Colaiacovo - Franson

Goal: Chad Johnson