Puck Drop: 7:00 PM EST | KeyBank Center | Buffalo, NY
Radio: WGR 550
SB Nation Penguins Blog: Pensburgh
Know Your Opponent
Record: (38-21-6) | 82 PTS
Last 10: 4-6-0
Division Ranking: 3rd in Metropolitan Division
Conference Ranking: 5th in Eastern Conference
PP: 15th (20.3%)
PK: 9th (82.1%)
What to Watch
1. A light?
When the two teams last met, just five games ago, Pittsburgh was atop the world and Buffalo was spiraling. Buffalo somehow won that game, igniting the last light of hope before snuffing it out again out west. The good news is that Pittsburgh has only taken one victory in that time. If there ever was a time where a team was ripe for the Sabres’ picking, it is now. Which can only mean one thing...
If there is one thing that is worse than the Sabres as a whole, it is their penalty kill. Dead last in the league. It’s a wreck that the team can’t afford not to fix. Yes, the playoffs are a distant dream, but the categoric failure that is the special teams is a blight on an already awful season, and it’s only getting worse. The players appear to be out of ideas, but more terrifying is the fact that the coaching staff doesn’t appear to have any idea how to fix this. With Pittsburgh’s top-10 power play, this could be the difference in the game.
3. Back on the up and up
Jack Eichel hasn’t scored in five games. The last time he potted the puck was the February 22 matchup with Pittsburgh. This isn’t a callout - any success the team has had this season can be attributed to Jack - this is just to point out that he’s on a season-high scoreless streak, and last time he laced them up against the Penguins, he scored two goals. It would be great for him to do it again, and start another scoring streak.
Victor Olofsson - Jack Eichel - Sam Reinhart
Jeff Skinner - Curtis Lazar - Wayne Simmonds
Dominik Kahun - Marcus Johansson - Jimmy Vesey
Zemgus Girgensons - Johan Larsson - Kyle Okposo
Lawrence Pilut- Rasmus Ristolainen
Jake McCabe - Henri Jokiharju
Rasmus Dahlin - Brandon Montour
Goaltender: Jonas Johansson (confirmed)
Jason Zucker - Sidney Crosby - Conor Sheary
Patrick Marleau - Evgeni Malkin - Bryan Rust
Jared McCann - Nick Bjugstad - Patric Hornqvist
Evan Rodrigues - Teddy Blueger - Sam Lafferty
Brian Dumoulin - Kris Letang
Marcus Pettersson - John Marino
Jack Johnson - Justin Schultz
Starting goalie: Matt Murray