It is too bad for the NHL that the fan base in Carolina is not a rabid hockey fan base, because tonights game between the Buffalo Sabres and Carolina Hurricanes is about as close to playoff hockey as it is going to get in February. The Buffalo Sabres hold on to the eighth and final playoff spot, trailed by the Carolina Hurricanes by only one point. A win tonight by the Sabres helps them seperate from the bottom of the Eastern Conference, a loss drops them out of the top eight.
Complicated matters for the Buffalo Sabres is the fact that they will not only be without number one goalie Ryan Miller, but could also be without Patrick Lalime, leaving the crease to rookie netminder Jhonas Enroth, to be backed up by?
The Sabres goaltending woes come at a very bad time, but good teams figure out how to overcome adversity and injury to win. New Jersey has been doing just fine with Kevin Weekes and Scott Clemenson.
Key players to watch tonight are Buffalo’s Jaro Spacek, who is on a four game, four point streak, and Carolina’s Ray Whitney, who has six points in four games.