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Sabres vs. Penguins preview

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Buffalo and Pittsburgh face off for the final time this season tonight at the Key.

NHL: Pittsburgh Penguins at Buffalo Sabres Kevin Hoffman-USA TODAY Sports

Game #74

Buffalo Sabres (30-31-12) vs. Pittsburgh Penguins (45-17-9)

Puck drop: 7:00 p.m. EST | KeyBank Center | Buffalo, NY

TV: MSG, ROOT | Radio: WGR 550

SB Nation’s Penguins Blog: Pensburgh

Three Questions

1. Can the Sabres avoid a late collapse like the last time these two teams met?

Going up 3-0 in the first period is an almost assured path to victory...unless you’re the Buffalo Sabres. The blue and gold blew that lead in their last game against Pittsburgh, and have often been lackadaisical on offense while protecting their two and three-goal leads. Of course, to be able to protect a lead you need to earn one first.

Both the Sabres and Penguins are fairly stingy with their goals against in the first period, but both are among the league leaders in second period goals allowed, so it could be dangerous for either to hold a lead after 20 minutes.

2. Which team will get more chances on the power play?

Two of the best units in the NHL face each other tonight, with the Penguins sporting the #6 power play ranking at 22.1%, and the Sabres leading the league at 24% after scoring two goals with the man advantage last night. With such potent power plays on either side, neither team will want to give their opponent too many chances to put one home.

3. Will we see the Beauts on TV tonight?

Two championship hockey teams are in the building tonight, with the Penguins and the Buffalo Beauts. The Beauts are the 2017 Isobel Cup champions, and will be signing autographs in the 100 level before the game, which is nice. But it’d be even nicer to see them and the Isobel Cup honored during a timeout in the arena and on TV.

Projected Buffalo Lines

90 Ryan O'Reilly -- 15 Jack Eichel -- 63 Tyler Ennis
Evander Kane -- 28 Zemgus Girgensons -- 12 Brian Gionta
26 Matt Moulson -- 23 Sam Reinhart -- 56 Justin Bailey
82 Marcus Foligno -- 71 Evan Rodrigues -- 52 Hudson Fasching

Josh Gorges -- 55 Rasmus Ristolainen
29 Jake McCabe -- 34 Casey Nelson
67 Brady Austin -- 47 Zach Bogosian

Goal: 40 Robin Lehner