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Sabres at Canadiens Preview: Back for the second half

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Buffalo returns from the All-Star Break, needing that rest for the first of a back-to-back.

Timothy T. Ludwig-USA TODAY Sports

Game #51

Buffalo Sabres (20-26-4) at
Montreal Canadiens (24-23-4)

Puck Drop: 7:00 pm EST | Bell Centre | Montreal, QC
TV: MSG, Bell, RDS, RSN | Radio: WGR 550
SB Nation Canadiens Blog: Eyes on The Prize

Three Questions

1. Will Sam Reinhart, Josh Gorges and Nic Deslauriers play well in their return?

The Sabres get three players back from injury tonight, with Sam Reinhart clearly being the more notable. He's back with O'Reilly on the top line, allowing the players to build on the chemistry they've had playing together this season.

2. Can Eichel continue his point-per-game pace?

Speaking of chemistry, the Sabres seem to have found something playing Eichel and Zemgus Girgensons together. Eichel has been on fire as of late, notching four points in the past two games and seven points in the last five. He's been great since the Christmas break, and is coming off another chance to reenergize with the All-Star Break. It's important to remember that he's past the amount of games that he played at BU last season, so breaks could be huge for him avoiding fatigue.

3. Can the Sabres take advantage of a slumping Canadiens team?

Montreal has not been good as of late, and they aren't on track to make the playoffs (currently five points out). The Canadiens have lost three games in a row by a combined eight goals. Sounds like a good way for the Sabres to solve some of their goal-scoring issues.

Projected BUF Lines

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

Gorges - Ristolainen
Bogosian - Pysyk
McCabe - Franson

Goal: Robin Lehner