The Buffalo Sabres need to snap out of their home funk quickly. Tonights opponent is the best road team in the NHL in the Philadelphia Flyers. To date the Flyers and Sabres have met once this season, and the Flyers came out on top in a one goal victory. The Sabres tried to come back in that game, with Jhonas Enroth keeping the team competitive but the offense couldn’t overcome a three goal deficit that happened in the opening six and a half minutes of the first period.
Compounding things for the Buffalo Sabres and their home woes, tonights game opens up a five game homestand. Hopefully with a healthy Ryan Miller in net, the team can come out of this stretch above .500. Their positioning in the standings is precarious at best, holding onto seventh place, just one point out of being on the outside of the bubble.
With the new alignment out, the Florida Panthers and Tampa Bay Lightning need to take note. With them joining the Northeast division teams in the new conference format, currently Boston, Buffalo, Toronto and Ottawa are in playoff spots, with Montreal just one point out. A revamped Florida squad is sititng in third place, they may not have any issues, but continuing their winning ways makes the new conference a tough place to play in.
The Sabres are looking to get healthy coming into tonights game, with McCormick, Hecht looking to break back into the lineup. While healthy pros would be a great addition to the team looking for points in an effort to climb back into the midst of the playoff race, the rookies have played well in their absence. McNabb and Kassian have left a good taste in the mouth of the organization and the fans. In fact there hasn’t been a callup that the Sarbes would say didn’t pan out well.