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Sabres Look To Rebound After Tough Loss

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The Sabres & Islanders square off again after Buffalo fell Monday night

New York Islanders v Buffalo Sabres Photo by Kevin Hoffman/Getty Images

Game 12

Buffalo Sabres (4-5-2) vs. New York Islanders (7-4-3)

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

TV: MSG

Radio: WGR 550

SB Nation Islanders Blog: Lighthouse Hockey

Know Your Opponent

New York Islanders

Record: (7-4-3)

Division Ranking: 3rd in East Division

PP: 14th (22.7%)

PK: 16th (80.0%)

What to Watch

1. A Better Effort

Monday night’s game was the Sabres’ first game action in two weeks, and in many ways, it showed. From the one Islanders goal that Linus Ullmark absolutely needed to have, to the sheer fact that the team didn’t register a single shot on goal in the third period, there was a lot left to be desired. Going an entire period without a shot on goal is simply unacceptable. The last time the Sabres did that was in 2011, and this was only the fourth time in franchise history that it’s happened, but it’s a sign of some problems that definitely need to be fixed.

2. More Goals

Overall, the Sabres need to start scoring more. Registering one or even two goals in a game isn’t going to cut it, especially when small mistakes are costing you goals at the other end of the ice. Victor Olofsson’s goal on Monday night was a thing of beauty, but the Sabres need to find consistent performance from a slew of their skaters in order to have any semblance of success.

The Sabres were doing this early on, with a bunch of games where they notched three or even four goals, but these two weeks away mean they have a lot of catching up to do in a short amount of time going forward.

3. A Busy Month

This series against the Islanders kicks off what should be a busy second half of February for the Sabres, who now have to make up several games that were previously postponed. As it currently stands, Buffalo is set for seven more games in the final 11 days of February, and an equally busy March. No rest for the weary, as they say.

Projected Lineup

Buffalo Sabres

Forwards

Jeff Skinner - Jack Eichel - Victor Olofsson

Taylor Hall - Eric Staal - Sam Reinhart

Tobias Rieder - Cody Eakin - Kyle Okposo

Steven Fogarty - Riley Sheahan - Tage Thompson

Defense

Rasmus Dahlin - Colin Miller

Matt Irwin - Henri Jokiharju

Brandon Davidson - Will Borgen

Jake McCabe - Brandon Montour (potentially back in)

Starting Goaltender: Carter Hutton

New York Islanders

Forwards

Anders Lee - Mathew Barzal - Josh Bailey

Michael Dal Colle - Brock Nelson - Jordan Eberle

Leo Komarov - JG Pageau - Oliver Wahlstrom

Matt Martin - Casey Cizikas - Cal Clutterbuck

Defense

Adam Pelech - Ryan Pulock

Nick Leddy - Scott Mayfield

Andy Greene - Noah Dobson

Starting Goaltender: Ilya Sorokin