The Buffalo Sabres travel to Pittsburgh tonight to face the Pittsburgh Penguins at PPG Paints Arena. The two teams have met once in the preseason so far, last week's OT-thriller held at Penn State's Pegula Ice Arena. The Sabres won that game 4-3 thanks to the hands of none other than... yep, you guessed it: Jack Eichel.
Tonight's game is the penultimate preseason game for the Sabres, and the team is growing closer to finalizing its regular-season roster. Multiple players, however, are also currently injured. According to The Buffalo News, defenseman Taylor Fedun is the latest to suffer injury; he left practice Tuesday after taking a puck to the ear. Fedun did skate with the team Wednesday morning. Jake McCabe also didn't skate Tuesday, suffering from a shoulder injury. Forwards Evan Rodrigues, Alex Nylander and Sean Malone also missed Tuesday's skate with injuries.
Tonight's game will be a treat for Sabres fans to watch. Tune in for the pregame show with Brian Duff and fan favorite alumni Martin Biron; then, Rick Jeanneret makes his return to the booth to call the game with Rob Ray.
Game #5 (Preseason)
Buffalo Sabres (1-2-1) vs. Pittsburgh Penguins (2-2-1)
Puck drop: 7:00 p.m. EST | PPG Paints Arena | Pittsburgh, PA
TV: MSG (Pregame @ 6:30 p.m.)
Radio: WGR 550
SB Nation Penguins blog: Pensburgh
1. How will Zach Bogosian and Nathan Beaulieu fare together on the power play?
The Sabres have started testing some of their power-play combinations in practice, and one reported pairing saw Bogosian and Sabres newcomer Beaulieu together. Historically, Bogosian has seen solid time on the man advantage, but his chemistry with Beaulieu is yet to be determined. The pair also skated together in Wednesday's morning skate.
FWIW, the other pieces of that power play unit: Jason Pominville, Matt Moulson and Evander Kane.
2. How can the Sabres contain the Pens' top talent?
Pittsburgh is pretty much fielding an NHL roster for Wednesday's game, which will provide an interesting challenge for the Sabres' squad. Among the players they'll contend with: Sidney Crosby, Evgeni Malkin, Phil Kessel, Brian Dumoulin, Kris Letang and Matt Murray.
Housley said facing Pens full lineup puts #Sabres in good position:— Jourdon LaBarber (@JourdonLaBarber) September 27, 2017
"I'd really like to keep the shifts short. I want us to bring the pace and the speed to their level or maybe a notch ahead."
3. How much longer will Seth Griffith stick around?
With Rochester Americans training camp well underway - and the Amerks' preseason game in Buffalo coming Saturday night, the AHL squad is filling up nicely. One piece still with the NHL team: newcomer Seth Griffith. He's survived cuts up until this point, but how much longer will he be around? John Vogl of The Buffalo News reported that Griffith will not be in the lineup on Wednesday night; perhaps his reassignment is coming sooner, rather than later.
Projected Sabres Lines
9 Evander Kane - 15 Jack Eichel - 29 Jason Pominville
28 Zemgus Girgensons - 90 Ryan O’Reilly - 21 Kyle Okposo
67 Benoit Pouliot - 23 Sam Reinhart - 95 Justin Bailey
44 Nicolas Deslauriers - 10 Jacob Josefson - 22 Johan Larsson
82 Nathan Beaulieu - 47 Zach Bogosian
93 Victor Antipin - 27 Taylor Fedun
41 Justin Falk - 38 Cody Goloubef
31 Chad Johnson
40 Robin Lehner