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Sabres at Devils preview: One down, three to go

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The Sabres could be without Brian Gionta as they face the Devils in the third last game of the 2015-16 season.

Timothy T. Ludwig-USA TODAY Sports

Game #80

Buffalo Sabres (33-35-11) at
New Jersey Devils (37-34-8)

Puck Drop: 7:00 pm EST | Prudential Center | Newark, NJ
TV: MSG, Bell, NHL.TV | Radio: WGR 550
SB Nation Devils Blog: All About The Jersey

Three Questions

1. Will it be Gionta or Justin Bailey tonight?

Brian Gionta has the flu, and his ability to play will be a game time decision. Should he sit out, the Sabres have recalled Justin Bailey from the Amerks on emergency basis.

2. Can the Sabres dominate the dot?

The Devils are the second-worst team in hockey in faceoff percentage, at 46.4%. The Sabres are in the middle of the pack at 49.3%, and would like to take that number up a tiny bit after tonight.

3. Will the Sabres keep their quest for .500 alive?

After finishing dead last the NHL each of the past two seasons, the Sabres can finish the season with a .500 record if they record five points in their final three games. To go from 54 points last year to potentially 82 this year would be a huge improvement, and it would be a big feather in the cap of Tim Murray that this rebuild is moving in the right direction.  A win or an OT/shootout loss keeps the dream alive, a loss in regulation means we have to wait until next year.

Projected BUF lines

Girgensons - O'Reilly - Fasching
Deslauriers - Eichel - Reinhart
Foligno - Larsson - Bailey
C. O'Reilly - Legwand - Moulson

Gorges - Ristolainen
McCabe - Bogosian
Pysyk - Nelson

Goal: Chad Johnson