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Preview: Let’s get wild

Sabres host the Wild in their second game of a seven-game home stand

NHL: Buffalo Sabres at Minnesota Wild Marilyn Indahl-USA TODAY Sports

Game 52

Buffalo Sabres (25-20-6) vs. Minnesota Wild (26-22-4)

Puck Drop: 7:00 PM | Key Bank Center | Buffalo, NY


Radio: WGR 550

SB Nation Wild Blog: Hockey Wilderness

Know Your Opponent

Minnesota Wild

Record: (26-22-4) | 56 points

Last 10: 5-4-1

Division Ranking: 4th in the Central Division

Conference Ranking: 7th in the Western Conference

PP: 10th (21.4%)

PK: 5th (83.5%)

What to Watch

1. Massive Lineup Changes

Phil Housley threw his forward lines and defense pairs into a blender prior to tonight’s game with the Wild. The most significant move was breaking up the top line of Jeff Skinner, Jack Eichel, and Sam Reinhart. Each will be on their own line in an attempt to spread out the scoring.

2. Now or Never

After getting blown out in their first game of a seven-game home stand last Friday by the Chicago Blackhawks, the Sabres need to start stringing wins together now. Thankfully, the Columbus Blue Jackets are doing their best to keep teams like the Sabres in the playoff race. If they can’t pull it together over the next two to three weeks, they’ll find themselves out of the playoff picture.

3. Ullmark or Hutton?

It’ll be interesting to see who gets the crease for the Sabres tonight. Conventional wisdom tells you that Linus Ullmark will be between the pipes. However, Housley could choose to go back to Carter Hutton to see if he can get him playing well again.

Buffalo Sabres


Conor Sheary - Jack Eichel - Kyle Okposo

Jeff Skinner - Casey Mittelstadt - Jason Pominville

C.J. Smith - Evan Rodrigues- Sam Reinhart

Zemgus Girgensons - Johan Larsson/Vladimir Sobotka - Tage Thompson


Rasmus Dahlin - Rasmus Ristolainen

Lawrence Pilut - Zach Bogosian

Jake McCabe - Marco Scandella

Starting Goaltender: Linus Ullmark (unconfirmed)

Minnesota Wild


Zach Parise - Mikko Koivu - Charlie Coyle

Jason Zucker - Eric Staal - Mikael Granlund

Jordan Greenway - Victor Rask - Marcus Foligno

Kyle Rau - Eric Fehr - Luke Kunin


Ryan Suter - Jared Spurgeon

Jonas Brodin - Greg Pateryn

Nick Seeler - Brad Hunt

Starting Goaltender: Devan Dubnyk (unconfirmed)