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Preview: Sabres roll into Big Apple to face Rangers

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Buffalo looks to continue their hot start with a stop at Madison Square Garden.

NHL: New York Rangers at Buffalo Sabres Kevin Hoffman-USA TODAY Sports

Game 11

Buffalo Sabres (8-1-1) vs. New York Rangers (2-4-1)

Puck Drop: 7:00 PM EST | Madison Square Garden | New York, NY

TV: MSG-B

Radio: WGR 550

SB Nation Rangers Blog: Blueshirt Banter

Know Your Opponent

New York Rangers

Record: 2-4-1 | 5 PTS

Last 10: 2-4-1

Division Ranking: 8th in Metropolitan Division

Conference Ranking: 15th in the Eastern Conference

PP: 13th (20.8%)

PK: 18th (77.4%)

What to Watch

1. Riding the Hot Hand

Winners of three straight, Buffalo looks to continue their hot start at Madison Square Garden on Thursday night.

The Sabres have dealt with adversity well - most recently confirmed by their 2-0 deficit that was overcome last game against the San Jose Sharks.

There is not much that seems to shake this Sabres squad early on, which makes riding that hot hand a little easier.

2. Preying on Weaker Teams

The New York Rangers most certainly would like to have started the season a little better - a current five-game losing streak certainly points to that thought. A record of 2-4-1 in their first seven games is not ideal for a team that was expected to struggle a little.

Goaltender Henrik Lundqvist even finds himself suffering a little out of the gate. In four starts, Lundqvist is 1-3-0 with 14 goals allowed (3.57 goals-allowed average) and a .906 save percentage.

If Buffalo wants to continue to put distance between themselves and non-playoff teams early on, beating teams like the Rangers is incredibly important - even in October.

3. Untouchable in Net

Goaltender Carter Hutton has enjoyed a white-hot start to his 2019-20 campaign.

In six starts, Hutton is 6-0-0 with a 1.65 goals-allowed-average, a .943 save percentage and two shutouts.

While Hutton is expected to split starting duties with Linus Ullmark more than last season, a strong start might buy Hutton more playing time.

Either way, Buffalo looks much stronger in net through their first ten games.

Game Prediction

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

New York Rangers (projected)

Forwards

Chris Kreider - Mika Zibanejad - Kaapo Kakko

Artemi Panarin - Ryan Strome - Pavel Buchnevich

Brendan Lemieux - Brett Howden - Jesper Fast

Brendan Smith - Lias Andersson - Greg McKegg

Defense

Marc Staal - Adam Fox

Libor Hajek - Jacob Trouba

Brady Skjei - Anthony DeAngelo

Starting Goaltender: Henrik Lundqvist