The fire sale in Ottawa has started, and then head into Buffalo with a much different roster than they had the last time we faced off against them.
Good news for Pat Kaleta, Chris Neil won’t be on the ice at all tonight, so it is one less pain in the neck we have to deal with. Points are at a premium, and things are getting a little unsettling as the trade deadline approaches.
I don’t think it is in the organizations blood to give up on this season, given their close proximity to the top eight teams. With games in hand and games against teams in front of them, the Buffalo Sabres are one good stretch of hockey away from standing in the end of the year tournament with seven other Eastern Conference teams. What is unsettling about it though, as other teams in the Northeast are actively engaging in the trade deadline festivities, the Buffalo Sabres are once again standing idle hoping that their current roster is the right roster to make a run for the the playoffs. Given the new mentality of ownership, our current status quo is not the position that we would have thought to be in.
Given Darcy’s comments about making decisions after the final homestand before the trade deadline, I think we can expect any deals the Sabres are going to be involved in will come either Sunday or Monday.
Suprisingly this year, it has been the Buffalo Sabres who have had the upper hand in the Ottawa series this year, winning three of the four meetings so far. Ottawa is playing a little bit of inspired hockey lately given the goaltender talents of Craig Anderson, but with only 49 points so far on the team, the Ottawa Senators are only interested in playing the role of spoiler in the Eastern Conference come game nights.
Hopefully the inspired play of the Buffalo Sabres under new owner Terry Pegula will continue to roll through the locker room, as they continue to stand only three points out of the playoff spot. Oh, how different fortunes for this team in October could have us singing a vastly different tune.
Puck Drop tonight is at 730PM. Look for Ryan Miller to start tonight, and probably tomorrow against the Detroit Red Wings to complete the homestand. While you could anticipate trying to figure out the Lindy Ruff goaltending schedule, I think it is a safe bet to say that the only way Ryan Miller is getting a day off is when Jhonas Enroth is called up from AHL Portland to relieve the netminder.