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Preview: Buffalo looks to end Vegas win-streak

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Golden Knights play host as Sabres continue to scramble for almost impossible playoff push

NHL: Buffalo Sabres at Vegas Golden Knights Stephen R. Sylvanie-USA TODAY Sports

Game 64

Buffalo Sabres (29-26-8) vs. Vegas Golden Knights (35-22-8)

Puck Drop: 10:00 PM EST | T-Mobile Arena | Las Vegas, NV

TV: MSG-B

Radio: WGR 550

SB Nation Golden Knights Blog: Knights on Ice

Know Your Opponent

Las Vegas Golden Knights

Record: 35-22-8 | 78 PTS

Last 10: 8-1-1

Division Ranking: 1st in Pacific Division

Conference Ranking: 4th in Western Conference

PP: T10th (21.4%)

PK: 22nd (78%)

What to Watch

1. Okposo On the Warpath, Ooh Ahh

While fans can all commiserate with each other about forward Kyle Okposo’s salary, he has been a nice surprise on the ice as of late. He is currently on a five-game point streak - his longest since 2017 - and his presence on the “LOG” line has been strong. Tonight, he will look to extend his streak and keep the fourth line dominating, which has been at the very least, fun to watch. Okposo’s line with Johan Larsson and Zemgus Girgensons has scored at least one goal in the last four games.

2. Kahun’s Debut?

While fans were able to see Wayne Simmonds in a Sabres jersey for the first time Wednesday night, fellow newbie Dominik Kahun was noticeably absent from the lineup, despite making the trip to Colorado with the team. According to head coach Ralph Krueger, Kahun has been recovering from a knee injury and a concussion and wants him to ease into practicing and joining the team “the right way.” He is still a question mark for tonight, but there is the possibility of seeing #95 very soon. The former Pittsburgh Penguin participated in a full practice on Thursday, skating on a line with Marcus Johansson and Jimmy Vesey.

3. Streaking in Vegas

The Golden Knights are coming off of their seventh consecutive win after defeating the Edmonton Oilers with a shutout on Wednesday night. Since their induction into the league, they have been an elite team and, after the trade deadline, that may be even more so. They now have 130 wins in their short tenure as a team (almost three seasons), while the Sabres have 87 wins in that same amount of time. Scary stuff, no? Vegas also leads the league in average goals per game at 3.2 as well as average shots per game at 34.4.

It will be interesting to see how the Sabres perform after their loss against the Avalanche - which was a tough pill to swallow as they exhibited great effort and speed, but came up short (especially on special teams).

Projected Lineup

Buffalo Sabres

Forwards

Victor Olofsson - Jack Eichel - Sam Reinhart

Jeff Skinner - Curtis Lazar - Wayne Simmonds

Dominik Kahun - Marcus Johansson - Jimmy Vesey

Zemgus Girgensons - Johan Larsson - Kyle Okposo/Michael Frolik

Defense

Brandon Montour - Rasmus Ristolainen

Jake McCabe - Henri Jokiharju

Rasmus Dahlin - Colin Miller

Lawrence Pilut has also been recalled from Rochester.

Starting Goaltender: Carter Hutton (expected)

Las Vegas Golden Knights

Forwards

Jonathan Marchessault - Paul Stastny - Reilly Smith

Max Pacioretty - William Karlsson - Mark Stone

Tomas Nosek - Chandler Stephenson - Nicolas Roy

William Carrier - Nick Cousins - Ryan Reaves

Defense

Brayden McNabb - Nate Schmidt

Alec Martinez - Shea Theodore

Nick Holden - Zach Whitecloud

Starting Goaltender: Marc-Andre Fleury (expected)