Buffalo Sabres Open Season Against Ottawa Senators

The puck drops on the 2022-23 season at 7 pm.

Game 1

Buffalo Sabres (0-0-0) vs. Ottawa Senators (0-0-0)

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


Radio: WGR 550

SB Nation Senators Blog: Silver Seven Sens

Know Your Opponent

Ottawa Senators

Record: (0-0-0)

Last Game: Haven’t played yet this season

Division Ranking: N/A



What to Watch

1. The Season Begins

It has been 167 days since the Buffalo Sabres last hit the ice in a regular-season NHL game that counted. The team looks to build off last season, when they went 32-39-11, and forge some stability going forward in hopes of returning to the Stanley Cup Playoffs and their former glory. With a relatively consistent roster from last season and a few new additions - amid a very young team - it all begins Thursday night with a home tilt against a division rival. This is also the first game of the season for the Ottawa Senators.

2. G-Unit in Ottawa

The biggest offseason splash for the Senators was the signing of free agent Claude Giroux. The 34-year-old spent the end of last season with the Florida Panthers, where he recorded 23 points in 18 games. Although he reportedly thought about re-signing in Florida, he elected to pen a three-year deal with Ottawa instead. It’s undoubtedly a big get for the Senators, who named him an alternate captain last month. Giroux provides a veteran presence and a lot of leadership to the young team, which is captained by 23-year-old Brady Tkachuk. Tkachuk, to his credit, had 67 points (30-37) in 79 games last season.

Last season, the Senators went 33-42-7 for 73 points, two spots below the Sabres.

The other significant add for the Senators this offseason was Alex DeBrincat. The 24-year-old spent the last five seasons with the Chicago Blackhawks. Last season, he had 78 points, including 41 goals, in 82 games. Despite finishing the season second on the team in scoring, he was traded to Ottawa for a trio of draft picks. (Those draft picks: Kevin Korchinski, Paul Ludwinski, and a third-round pick in 2024.)

3. A Lot to Look Forward To

For Sabres fans, there’s a lot to look forward to with this young core. The emergence of Tage Thompson last year was an unexpected treat; how will he follow that up? Alex Tuch is still relatively young and is heading into his first full season with the Sabres. Jack Quinn and JJ Peterka look to make an impact all season long in their first (hopefully) full NHL seasons.

The Sabres may be the youngest team in the NHL - with an average age of 25 (do you feel old now?), but that doesn’t have to be a bad thing!

Projected Lineups

Buffalo Sabres


Jeff Skinner - Tage Thompson - Victor Olofsson

Jack Quinn - Casey Mittelstadt - Alex Tuch

Peyton Krebs - Dylan Cozens - JJ Peterka

Zemgus Girgensons - Rasmus Asplund - Kyle Okposo


Mattias Samuelsson - Rasmus Dahlin

Owen Power - Henri Jokiharju

Jacob Bryson - Iyla Lyubushkin

Goaltenders: Craig Anderson, Eric Comrie

(Remember: Don Granato has said he won’t be announcing his starting goalies ahead of games this season. However, all signs point to Craig Anderson getting the start.)

Ottawa Senators


Brady Tkachuk - Tim Stützle - Drake Batherson

Alex DeBrincat - Josh Norris - Claude Giroux

Tyler - Motte - Shane Pinto - Mathieu Joseph

Parker Kelly - Kastelic - Austin Watson

Derick Brassard, Dylan Gambrell


Thomas Chabot - Artem Zub

Jake Sanderson - Travis Hamonic

Erik Brannstrom - Nick Holden

Nikita Zaitsev

Goaltenders: Anton Forsberg, Magnus Hellberg