Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports

Buffalo Sabres PreGame Skate #27: Toronto Maple Leafs

It hasn’t been that long that the Buffalo Sabres (5-20-1) faced off against the Toronto Maple Leafs (14-9-2).  The first meeting was in the

inaugural game of the Pat Lafontaine and Ted Nolan era – and the Buffalo Sabres mustered a win.  The Sabres have been without a win, or more than one goal since facing the Maple Leafs in a home and home, back to back series last weekend.

The Maple Leafs and Sabres have proven that anything can happen in games between the Atlantic division rivals this year.  In two of three meetings (including the preseason contest) John Scott has been a bigger story than most hockey fans have wanted.  The last meeting between the two teams Scott was penalized 14 minutes just for being on the ice and getting jumped from behind.  Anything goes when the Sabres face off against the Leafs.

The offensive problems for the Buffalo Sabres continue – as their goaltender continues to give them every chance to win hockey games.  The inability to score goals affects the entire roster.

Enter in roster shakeup number one.  Matt D’Agostini will make his Buffalo Sabres debut tonight, making him the second veteran player to be added to the roster this year.  He will skate with Steve Ott and Ville Leino.

Mikhail Grigorenko, Jaime McBain and Brayden McNabb will be healthy scratches for the Buffalo Sabres tonight.

Ryan Miller was the first goalie off the skate this morning – so he will likely start against the Maple Leafs tonight.  Jhonas Enroth will get another shot at proving his work for the new head coach, as he will likely start against New Jersey tomorrow.

The Toronto Maple Leafs come into tonight a very beatable team.  While Buffalo is 3-7 in their last ten games, Toronto is only slightly better at 4-4-2.  Toronto’s last outing was a seemingly decent 5-3 lead against the Pittsburgh Penguins on Wednesday night.  After being outshot 17-0 in the third period, Toronto dropped the game in the shootout.

While the Sabres could be getting McCormick back on Saturday – the Toronto Maple Leafs remain without the services of Joffrey Lupul and Dave Bolland.

After beating the Toronto Maple Leafs on November 15th, it has been five straight losses for the team since.  Buffalo is playing much differently than when they were under the tutoring eye of Ron Rolston, but still struggle to pull it all together.  The closed door meeting with the team’s players after the Montreal Canadiens game on Wednesday night could be the indication of better things to come from the Buffalo Sabres.

If the Sabres offensive woes are going to end – the Maple Leafs are a good team to play.  They have allowed 12 goals in their last two games – loosing to the Columbus Blue Jackets 6-0 and the Penguins 6-5.

Tonight’s action takes place at 7:30.

 

 

Tags: Buffalo Sabres Pregame Toronto Maple Leafs

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