Buffalo Sabres Need To Focus Against League Leading Predators

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The Buffalo Sabres are in a bit of a tight spot (well much tighter than usual this season) as their defensive core has been depleted drastically. Josh Gorges is out for the remainder of the season due to his surgery he needs, Mike Weber is out for a couple of weeks with an injury, Tyson Strachan is out for a little while as well, and Nikita Zadorov has been suspended “for team reasons,” (Coach Ted Nolan said in his pregame interview).

With this bit of drama amongst the Sabres blue line, they have had to call up Mark Pysyk and Jake McCabe from Rochester to fill in the holes. That spells another disadvantage for the Sabres as they go up against Nashville.

Sabres Scope

Buffalo has been showing their resilience throughout this season and will need to continue to show it against the predators. They have had their team changed by the recent trades, and now by the injuries to the defense. Tonight they will have ton continue to support each other in every possible situation and to get to the Nashville goaltender as quickly as possible.

The offense will need to come together and be a force against the Nashville defense if the Buffalo Sabres hope to compete for a win tonight. The defense is depleted and the Predators’ offense has been rolling so they cannot fully lean on the young defense and Michal Neuvirth for the entire game. Don’t get me wrong, the back end of the Sabres is skilled and capable, but if the offense does not put pressure on Pekka Rinne and his defense then they will be on the losing end of the score sheet for sure.

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Predators Scope

Pekka Rinne is one of few top tier goaltenders in the league right now, and it makes him even better considering he has a defense featuring the likes of Shea Weber (and his 108 MPH bomb), Seth Jones, Cody Franson, and Roman Josi. Combining all of those solid defensive efforts is a recipe for success and is a key reason for Nashville’s.

The Sabres must also keep tabs on the rookie sensation Filip Forsberg as he leads the Predators in points. The Predator’s offense is fronted by him, James Neal (team leading 21 goals) and Mike Ribeiro (team leading 38 assists). Those three, along with some solid secondary scoring by Mike Fisher and Colin Wilson have created a force to be noticed in Nashville and the Sabres will need to focus in order to keep up with them.

Predictions

If the Sabres end up spending too much time standing around in their own end then they will end up paying for it. Shea Weber is a master of creating scoring chances and being at the point allows him to set it up in any way he chooses. Buffalo needs to maintain their focus in order to compete, and they need to execute an effective offensive strategy as well.

If they are able to do that then the Buffalo Sabres will win tonight’s game by a score of 4-3, but if they end up standing around and letting the Nashville players walk all over them then they will be shamed with a 6-1 loss tonight.

Let’s see how they do tonight.

LET’S GO BUFFALO!!

Next: Josh Gorges To Have Season Ending Surgery