Buffalo Sabres (2-1-0) vs. Pittsburgh Penguins (3-0-2)
CONSOL Energy Center
An early gameday today.
The Pens are at home against Thomas Vanek and the Buffalo Sabres. Evgeni Malkin is out tonight. Marc-Andre Fleury should be back in net. The Sabres brought in some big money free agents this summer and they'll look a lot different than the last time we saw them. They're pretty close to the salary cap ceiling right now. The Pens will wearing their dark blue third jerseys tonight.
Remember the collection for Derek Kotecki.
Season Series: 0-0-0
Last Meeting: March 8, 2011. Penguins won 3-1
What we said in our recap:
The first game back from a long road trip is usually a mess. Not last night. It was business as usual for the Penguins. They grinded the Sabres down, got an insurance goal, and helped damage the Sabres' playoff chances in the process. Only thing missing was someone peeing on Lindy Ruff.
Know Your Enemy: Top Shelf
What they're saying:
I have to admit, I had a hard time focusing on the the Sabres season opener. I took the day off from work so I could watch it, but it just felt weird, this watching hockey in the middle of the day on Friday. It felt like a fake game. I have a feeling I won't feel like the season has REALLY started until they're playing in front of an NHL crowd in an NHL arena. That said, I'll take the win.
Pittsburgh Penguins Notes:
As we mentioned earlier, Malkin won't play tonight.
Sidney Crosby is still fine.
Matt Cooke's style changes have worked so far.
Buffalo Sabres Notes:
The Sabres have a new locker room.
Thomas Vanek is talented.
The Sabres started the year in Europe.
Favorite Flames-Related Image, Photoshop or Gif:
No idea right now. Send us some.
Pittsburgh Penguins lines from Penguins.NHL.com:
Steve Sullivan - Jordan Staal - James Neal
Chris Kunitz - Joe Vitale - Tyler Kennedy
Matt Cooke - Richard Park - Pascal Dupuis
Arron Asham - Mark Letestu - Craig Adams
Kris Letang - Deryk Engelland
Paul Martin - Zbynek Michalek
Matt Niskanen - Ben Lovejoy
The Pens' site has Crosby listed on the first line. He's not playing.
No idea on the Sabres lines, but Jhonas Enroth will be in net.
No Crosby and no Malkin. Jordan Staal is again our first line center. The Pens are wearing dark blue. Ryan Miller isn't playing. It doesn't look like a very lucky situation right now. This will be one of those "grind them down" games. It will be interesting to see how the new look Sabres play.