Keys to Sabres-Wild Tilt

By: David Kolb

BUFFALO SABRES (3-3-2) @ MINNESOTA WILD (6-2-1)

SECOND AND FINAL

Tonight the Sabres will try and avenge last Tuesday’s 4-0 shutout loss to the Wild. Buffalo, despite losing, played well, outshooting Minnesota 38-22. Interestingly, the road team has won 14 of 19 games between the Sabres and Wild all-time, including each of the last four games.

WHOSE STREAK WILL END?

The Sabres enter tonight’s game against the Minnesota Wild looking for their third win in a row, as the Sabres shut out the Florida Panthers 3–0 on Saturday, then defeated the Winnipeg Jets 3-1 on Sunday. Meanwhile, the Wild have won three games in a row – all via shutouts, thanks to red-hot goalie Devan Dubnyk.

POWER PLAY PAYING DIVIDENDS

The Sabres have focused on working on the power play since training camp and it’s paid off, as they have gone 8-for-32 with the man advantage. Matt Moulson leads the team with four power play goals, Ryan O’Reilly has two, while Kyle Okposo and Sam Reinhart each have lit-the-lamp once with the extra man.

WILD SHORT SKATERS

The Wild come into tonight’s contest with serious injury issues, as Marco Scandella, Zach Parise, Zac Dalpe and Chris Stewart will all miss tonight’s game. The injuries will most likely mean the Wild’s top forwards will receive more minutes, while their fourth line sees as little as one shift per period.

FACHING OUT, BAILEY IN

Sabres’ forward Hudson Fasching exited Sunday’s game early with a groin injury and will not play tonight. Coach Dan Bylsma will insert Justin Bailey, who was recalled from the AHL into the lineup. Bailey has notched three goals and an assist for four points in seven games for the Amerks this season.