clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

Preview: Searching for the Home Ice Advantage

New, comments

Sabres look to win their second home game since Christmas when they host the St. Louis Blues tonight

NHL: Buffalo Sabres at St. Louis Blues Jeff Curry-USA TODAY Sports

Game #52

Buffalo Sabres (14-28-9) vs. St. Louis Blues (31-19-3)

Season Series: 1-0 Blues

12/10 - Blues 3 | Sabres 2 (OT) (recap)

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

TV: MSG

Radio: WGR 550

SB Nation Blues blog: St. Louis Game Time

What to Watch

1. Home Ice Disadvantage

The Sabres have only won once at home since December 23. They’re tied with the Arizona Coyotes for the least amount of wins at home with six. If they can’t figure it out February could be a long month with 8 of the remaining 13 games taking place on home ice.

2. Can Ryan O’Reilly stay hot?

O’Reilly is a streaky scorer and is in the midst of one of his scoring streaks. Entering tonight he has 10 points in his last 10 games. Including earning at least a point in four of the last five games.

3. Samson playing his best hockey.

Sam Reinhart is also playing the best hockey we’ve seen from him this season. He has eight points in the last 10 games and five points in the last five. While it’s still not what we expected entering the season. Reinhart is now on a pace for 16 goals and 33 points on the season. Much better than the pace he was on a month ago.

Know Your Opponent

1. Winning

The Blues come into tonight winners in six of their last eight. They scored three goals in every one of those games except three.

2. Productive Roster

The Blues have six players on the roster that have at least 30 points. All-Star Brayden Schenn leads the club with 51 points in 53 games. Defenseman Alex Pietrangelo is sixth in scoring among all NHL defenders with 35 points.

3. Carter Hutton

Goaltender Carter Hutton has started to take over the starting role from Jake Allen. Hutton is having a fantastic season with 13 wins in 22 appearances. He has a 1.70 goals against average and .945 save percentage.

Projected Lineup

9 Evander Kane - 15 Jack Eichel - 21 Kyle Okposo

20 Scott Wilson - 90 Ryan O’Reilly - 23 Sam Reinhart

28 Zemgus Girgensons - 71 Evan Rodrigues - 29 Jason Pominville

17 Jordan Nolan - 10 Jacob Josefson - 67 Benoit Pouliot

6 Marco Scandella - 55 Rasmus Ristolainen

19 Jake McCabe - 93 Victor Antipin

8 Casey Nelson - 82 Nathan Beaulieu

Starting Goaltender: 40 Robin Lehner