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Sabres wrap up road trip in San Jose tonight

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Western tie-breaker to round out west coast trip stretch

NHL: Buffalo Sabres at San Jose Sharks John Hefti-USA TODAY Sports

Game 9

Bufalo Sabres (6-1-1) vs. San Jose Sharks (3-4-0)

Puck Drop: 10:30 PM EST | SAP Center | San Jose, CA

TV: MSG-B, NBC Sports - California

Radio: WGR 550

SB Nation Sharks Blog: Fear the Fin

Know Your Opponent

San Jose Sharks

Record: 3-4-0 | 6 PTS

Last 10: 3-4-0

Division Ranking: 7th in Pacific Division

Conference Ranking: 11th in the Western Conference

PP: 20th (29.1%)

PK: 4th (91.7%)

What to Watch

1. Carter “Hot”-on

Thursday night’s visit to L.A.’s arena was another record-breaking game for the Sabres in this young season. Carter Hutton made an impressive 47 saves and shut out the Kings, making it his second shutout not only of the season, but of this week. Hutton is projected to start in the net tonight and if he does, it will be interesting to see how he does against the Sharks’ top goal-scorers.

2. San Jose Hot Streak

The Sharks began the season with four straight losses, but the momentum changed when they faced the Chicago Blackhawks and have since won three in a row. Former Sabre Evander Kane tallied a first period hat trick in their match-up against the Hurricanes this past Wednesday, so he will be one to watch closely tonight.

3. Shoot the Biscuit

One of the struggles early this season for the Sabres has been producing shots on goal. This may be surprising with their impressive start, but the Sabres are ranked 17th among the league in shots. And, though Thursday’s game was a win, it was not a pleasant one with a total of only 24 shots to the Kings’ 47. Additionally, having returned to the ice against the Kings following an upper body injury, Conor Sheary is back to making an early impact. Casey Mittelstadt finally broke his scoring silence, too, with his three points on Thursday. Buffalo will need to shift their focus to shooting more and creating more scoring opportunities and this third line is a hot one at the moment.

Buffalo Sabres (projected)

Forwards

Victor Olofsson - Jack Eichel - Sam Reinhart

Jeff Skinner - Marcus Johansson - Vladimir Sobotka

Jimmy Vesey - Casey Mittelstadt - Conor Sheary

Zemgus Girgensons - Johan Larsson - Kyle Okposo

Defense

Jake McCabe - Rasmus Ristolainen

Rasmus Dahlin - Colin Miller

Marco Scandella - Henri Jokiharju

Starting Goaltender: Carter Hutton

Game Prediction

San Jose Sharks (projected)

Forwards

Timo Meier - Logan Couture - Patrick Marleau

Evander Kane - Tomas Hertl - Kevin Labanc

Marcus Sorensen - Joe Thornton - Barclay Goodrow

Melker Karlsson - Dylan Gambrell - Lukas Radil

Defense

Marc-Edouard Vlasic - Brent Burns

Brenden Dillon - Erik Karlsson

Mario Ferraro - Tim Heed

Starting Goaltender: Martin Jones