Buffalo Sabres (16-12-3) @ Pittsburgh Penguins (17-11-4)
TV: ROOT, MSG-B
CONSOL Energy Center - Pittsburgh, PA
The Penguins are 5-5 in their last ten. They've lost four of their last five. The Sabres are 4-4-2 in their last ten. They've lost three of their last five, but two losses and one win were in overtime. A look at the injured players list from the Penguins website will help you understand why:
Season Series: 0-1-0
Last Meeting That Counted: October 15, 2011. Sabres won 3-2.
What we said in our recap:
Gutsy effort by the Pens last night. The best way to describe everything going on right now is that everyone is just missing Evgeni Malkin and Sidney Crosby. Last year was one thing, but this year you can almost feel the letdown. And nothing can be done about it. Yeah, woe are Penguins fans, who have watched an elite player wearing the black and gold for the past 27 years. Regardless, there's a cloud of "meh" hanging around, evidenced by handfuls of fans leaving a 3-1 game with 6 minutes left. Just very strange.
Without all the cogs in the machine working, it is so hard to get a good feel for what each player can do. And it's hard to remind yourself that some guys may be facing matchups that they would not normally face. You really have to step back and think about that. And we're as guilty of this as anyone.;
Know Your Enemy: Top Shelf
What they're saying:
They haven't said anything in a while. Maybe we should suggest Die By The Blade instead.
Pittsburgh Penguins Notes:
Dan Bylsma is meeting with the media right about now.
The Pens didn't have a morning skate today because of the back-to-back.
Buffalo Sabres Notes:
The Sabres beat the Leafs last night. Vanek had four points. Ryan Miller was in net.
Favorite Sabres-Related Image, Photoshop or Gif:
We'll just go with this:
Pittsburgh Penguins lines from Empty Netters:
Chris Kunitz - Evgeni Malkin - James Neal
Matt Cooke - Pascal Dupuis - Tyler Kennedy
Steve Sullivan - Joe Vitale - Arron Asham
Steve MacIntyre - Craig Adams - Eric Tangradi
Paul Martin - Deryk Engelland
Matt Niskanen - Brooks Orpik
Simon Despres - Alexandre Picard
These lines could change drastically depending on who actually plays.
Buffalo Sabres lines from Empty Netters:
Thomas Vanek - Paul Szczechura - Jason Pominville
Tyler Ennis - Derek Roy - Drew Stafford
Luke Adam - Paul Gaustad - Zack Kassian
Cody McCormick - Matt Ellis - Colin Stuart
Robyn Regehr - Andrej Sekera
Christian Ehrhoff - Jordan Leopold
Brayden McNabb - Mike Weber
Again, no idea who will actually be playing.
It's pretty much just survival mode right now. Both teams have unstable line-ups. The Sabres used defenseman Marc-Andre Gragnani as a forward last night. That won't happen today, but it gives you an indication of where the team is right now. The Penguins have Pascal Dupuis playing center. We have no idea what's going on.