Buffalo Sabres need to make history repeat itself in December

Nov 30, 2023; St. Louis, Missouri, USA; Buffalo Sabres center Peyton Krebs (19) is congratulated by teammates after scoring against the St. Louis Blues during the second period at Enterprise Center. Mandatory Credit: Jeff Curry-USA TODAY Sports
Nov 30, 2023; St. Louis, Missouri, USA; Buffalo Sabres center Peyton Krebs (19) is congratulated by teammates after scoring against the St. Louis Blues during the second period at Enterprise Center. Mandatory Credit: Jeff Curry-USA TODAY Sports /
facebooktwitterreddit

The Buffalo Sabres had two so-so months and they are now 10-11-2, mediocre in generous terms as December 2023 arrives. But there is hope.

While the Buffalo Sabres looked bad at times in October and November, here they stand with a 10-11-2 record heading into December 2023. Few of us saw the Blue and Gold struggling early in the season thanks to their immense growth last year, but we’re also quick to forget that they only had 10 wins after 23 games last year, too.

The bummer is obvious: This team is one more year experienced, they should have a better record. I would agree with that assessment, but injuries have rocked this team, and few groups as young as the Sabres will have an answer for that. When one of those injured players is your best goal-scorer from last season, then you will probably have a tough time replacing him on most nights.

Still, 10-11-2 isn’t tough to fight back from, as the Sabres proved last season when they finished the month 8-2-1, and gave us an encore in January of 8-5-2. Do the math, and Buffalo finished 16-7-3 (35 points) in those two months, and they were also trending toward a wild card at the time.

Buffalo Sabres were mediocre last November before getting hot in December

The downside? Tage Thompson will most likely miss the entire month, as will Jack Quinn. But the upside is obvious, as the Sabres have a few teams they can either beat or have beaten coming up. They played the Carolina Hurricanes well the last time they were in Raleigh, and the Blue and Gold gave the Montreal Canadiens the game when both teams last met.

Buffalo also has two meetings with the Arizona Coyotes, two with the Columbus Blue Jackets, one with the Toronto Maple Leafs, and another with the New York Rangers, before closing out the calendar year against the Ottawa Senators. They also swept the Detroit Red Wings, who they play on December 5th, last season, and the Nashville Predators (December 3rd) may be the streakiest team in hockey.

Must Read. Casey Mittelstadt had a near-miss is one you must see to believe. light

Even with the team still shorthanded, this monthly schedule contains a lot of winnable games, and the Buffalo Sabres have enough talent to beat every team mentioned above, many of whom they either already beat or should have beaten. Therefore, they may still reside behind the eight-ball, but if recent history repeats itself, the Blue and Gold will snag their first winning record of the month.

(Schedule provided by Hockey-Reference)