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Preview: Another Afternoon Game

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The Sabres are back in action in an afternoon tilt with the Washington Capitals

NHL: Washington Capitals at Buffalo Sabres Kevin Hoffman-USA TODAY Sports

Game #60

Buffalo Sabres (17-31-11) vs. Washington Capitals (33-18-7)

Season Series: 1-0 Sabres

11a/7: Sabres 3 | Capitals 1 (recap)

Puck drop: 3:00 p.m. EST | KeyBank Center | Buffalo, NY


Radio: WGR 550

SB Nation Capitals blog: Japers Rink

What to Watch

1. Afternoon Struggles

The Sabres have struggled all season in afternoon games. They’re 0-6 this season in games that have started before 7 PM EST. They have four more afternoon games on the schedule including today.

2. Rebound

Last time the Sabres were dominated on home ice they responded with a three-game winning streak in Western Canada. We’ll see how they respond to an awful performance against the Los Angeles Kings on Saturday.

3. Ullmark Recalled

Linus Ullmark was recalled from the Rochester Americans this morning. Robin Lehner is out day-to-day with a lower-body injury. I would expect Chad Johnson to be the starter today and Ullmark to return to Rochester once Lehner is healthy.

Know Your Opponent

1. Another desperate hockey team.

Like the Kings on Saturday, the Capitals come into today’s game desperate for points. They’ve lost three of their last four including an embarrassing 7-1 loss at the hands of the Chicago Blackhawks on Saturday. If the Sabres are not ready to play we could see a repeat of the game from the weekend.

2. Still Got It

It’s easy to forget that Alex Ovechkin is still the most dangerous goal scorer in the NHL. He has 34 goals this season which leads the NHL and 65 points in 58 games.

Projected Lineup (unconfirmed)

9 Evander Kane - 90 Ryan O’Reilly - 23 Sam Reinhart

67 Benoit Pouliot - 71 Evan Rodrigues - 21 Kyle Okposo

20 Scott Wilson - 22 Johan Larsson - 29 Jason Pominville

28 Zemgus Girgensons - 10 Jacob Josefson - 13 Nick Baptiste

82 Nathan Beaulieu - 55 Ramsus Ristolainen

6 Marco Scandella - 8 Casey Nelson

41 Justin Falk - 93 Victor Antipin

Starting Goaltender: 31 Chad Johnson