Mar 24, 2012; Buffalo, NY, USA; Buffalo Sabres goalie Ryan Miller (30) makes a glove save during the third period against the Minnesota Wild at the First Niagara Center. Buffalo defeats Minnesota 3 - 1. Mandatory Credit: Timothy T. Ludwig-USA TODAY Sports

Buffalo Sabres – Minnesota Wild: Fan Predictions!

Happy Columbus Day, Buffalo Sabres fans!

If you had the day off from work, I hope you made good use of it!  On the other hand, if you did have to work to day . . . well, I’ll get back to you as soon as I’m through laughing!

Now: the game discussion.

The winless, owners-of-a-single-point Buffalo Sabres host the 2-1-2 Minnesota Wild tonight at the First Niagara Center.  This marks the first time the Sabres will face ex-captain Jason Pominville since he was traded last season.  Grudge match!

There’s some good news and bad news concerning tonight’s match-up.   First, the bad news (I like to get it out of the way, since we are probably going to be hearing a lot of bad news throughout the season):  the Wild can score (2.8 per game), and defend (2.2 goals allowed per game, 6th best in the NHL).  The Sabres?  They score at a rate of exactly one goal per game.  Not exactly a dream match-up for a Sabres team looking to get its first win of the season.

Like I said, though: there is good news, as well, as the Wild have a pretty crummy penalty kill (66.7%, 28th in the NHL) and they commit a healthy number of penalties, to the tune of almost 13 minutes per game.  If the Sabres want to win tonight, they have to be ready to capitalize on the power play.   (In case you are curious, the Sabres commit about 12 minutes worth of penalties a game, but they currently have a 90% pk rate, 4th best in the NHL!)

And the Wild have yet to win on the road, so the Sabres have that going for them, too!

Questions to consider:

1. Will Jason Pominville burn his former team tonight?  (So far this season, he has only scored one goal.)

2. Will the Sabres break through on the power play?

3. Final score, and star of the game?

Time to share, and come back for the back-and-forth!

Tags: Buffalo Sabres Minnesota Wild

  • Richard Spalding

    Bobby Ryan managed to net one against his old team Anaheim last night, so I think Pominville will score one tonight, as well. If the Sabres can continue playing like they did in the latter part of their game against Chicago, I think they can make a game of this. One of these days, I’m going to be right: Sabres win 3-1 at home tonight! First star: Ryan Miller.

  • Travis Hoh

    2.8 GPG > 1 GPG. I’m a man of numbers and it’s pretty obvious who will come away victorious. I don’t think Pommers will have much influence in this game however, possibly an assist.

    3-1 is a bold claim Rich, very bold.

    If the Sabres do manage to score (big if), I think it will be Ennis with some trickery in front of the net. Backstrom will be one of the three stars.

    Lets go Sabres!

    • Richard Spalding

      I like being bold – when it pays off, I brag! I ignore my losses, of course.

      Backstrom is questionable for tonight’s game, which is the basket into which I will put all my eggs!

      • UMDBulldogHockey

        It’s a good thing Hardings better than Backstrom!

        • Richard Spalding

          Dammit! :D Got the Pommers goal under my belt, though!

  • Caitlin Campbell

    I agree with Travis- I think Pominville is going to have a pretty quiet night, lot’s of emotions for him. He plays a pretty quiet game with Miller blanking him.
    The Sabres seem to like one goal games so I’m going to stick with that trend and predict a one goal game, I think the Sabres may be able to steal this one and squeak a 2-1 win out of the Wild.
    Predicting Foligno will pot his first goal tonight and as always be a game-changer playing with energy.

  • wolfdoctor

    I’m going with Drew Stafford scoring the winner in overtime.

    • Caitlin Campbell

      :o If that happens the world might just end

      • wolfdoctor

        Ha ha. I like to play long shots.

        • Caitlin Campbell

          Well sir if it comes true… someone should be buying you a beer.

  • Timothy Redinger

    Columbus Day – might as well be Groundhog Day in Buffalo – with Enroth in net, I see him playing well, but the Wild still outscoring Buffalo 3-1 with Pommers getting a goal – and the Sabres goal coming late with the Wild already resting on the lead.

    • Timothy Redinger

      Oh I was so close – had they just popped in the empty net, I would have been 75% right on this.

  • Jes

    Sabres win tonight 4-1.
    1. Yes, Poms will get 1 goal tonight.
    2. I’m thinking 2 goals on the PP tonight for our Sabres.
    3. Final Score – 4-1 Sabres Sabres Star of The Game – Jhonas Enroth

  • GopherBulldogHockey

    The Wild have controlled the pace of the game against every single team they have played. Saturday against Dallas they won 5 to 1, controlled the take away department and out shot them by 17.Buffalo is not as good of a team as Dallas either so I see Buffalo have a very tough time winning this game. The Wild choked the first couple games but are starting to roll now. Wild win easily.

  • qwicwted

    Pommer should continue on the same pace he has since playing last year in Bflo – He’ll wait for an opportune time to snip. IMO Pommer is very overrated. So, one good hit on him and you take him out of the game. Wonder if he will show some passion with his return? Doubt it – Pommer was a horrible captain and maybe we should be thinking along the lines of Ronny boy playing Larsson more than 3 minutes so that he can score. Maybe Ron should consider putting Larsson on the 1st or 2nd line versus playing with McCormick, Scott or Kaleta. I just don’t get it.

    • Richard Spalding

      Seriously! Larsson should be on the second line, at least.

    • UMDBulldogHockey

      Well he scored tonight didnt he.

  • davidmuscalo

    I don’t know if Pommer will score tonight – whether he does or not will be irrelevant because the Sabres will lose by at least three goals. The Wild have several issues in their favor: Enroth will be in goal, Pommer will play very hard against his former teammates (at least those who are still there) and the Sabres can’t score.

    The Sabres have lost there first six games of the season. In the next four games, the weakest opponent is the Wild. Ergo, I think the Sabres will go 0-10, before the get their first win.