The Buffalo Sabres (21-49-9) have one last chance to play spoiler against a team making the playoffs tonight against the New York Rangers (44-31-5).
The New York Rangers are a lock for the playoffs, in fact, all eight spots in the playoff hunt are accounted for, it is all a matter of placement right now. The Rangers are looking to hold off the Philadelphia Flyers for home ice, but also have to watch out for the Columbus Blue Jackets (42-31-3). The Blue Jackets are just two points behind the Rangers in the Metropolitan Division, and could steal the divisional spot from the Rangers by winning out – but the Rangers would have to lose out to drop into the wild card spots.
As much as I hate the Philadelphia Flyers – I can’t root for the Sabres to lose anymore. With the final spot locked up, the only “fan appreciation” gift the Buffalo Sabres can give their fans is to win some of their remaining games in entertaining fashion.
The Sabres play their third and final games against the Boys of Broadway, and so far this season haven’t had any luck. The Sabres have been outscored 5-1 in two games, losing both in regulation.
Henrik Lundqvist has a .982 save percentage against the Sabres so far this year, stopping 56 of the 57 shots the Sabres have thrown at him. The Rangers will be looking for their two points tonight, they only have a two point lead on the Flyers for home ice in the first round of the playoffs. Philadelphia has a game in hand.
Buffalo has lost eight of its last nine contests. With some veteran help returning to the lineup from injury, the team could use the added support if they get to play spoiler. The Rangers on the other hand are getting hot at the right time, going 8-2-1 in their last 11 games.
This is the 168th all time meeting between the two clubs, with the Sabres going 31-31-20 on the road against the Rangers.