The best day of the week for hockey fans is back. Wednesday Night! Tonight we have a lopsided mach up as the leaders of the East face off with the underdog of the East. That's right, the Pittsburgh Penguins are facing off against the Buffalo Sabres. This is the Tale of the Tape.
Pittsburgh Penguins: It's no question that the Penguins are one of the hottest teams in the league at this time, powered by a stellar offensive line that will more than likely aid the Penguins in the playoff push.
The Penguins are coming into Buffalo sitting at a 7-3-0 record in their last ten games as well as a season record of 39-15-2. Like I said earlier, the Penguins are holding onto the number one seed in the conference with 80 points. The Pens will be looking to increase their points to 82 as they close off their three game season series with the Sabres. Make sure to keep and eye on forwards, Jussi Jokinen, Evgeni Malkin, and James Neal. Also keep an eye on goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury who leads the League with 30 wins.
Buffalo Sabres: You have to give the Sabres credit for not giving up. Sitting in last place in the league is never a good look for a team that has arguably one of the better goalies in the league.
The Sabres as well as the Sabres management just can't seem to find the right team chemistry. This results in detrimental losses, coming into their home barn, they are sitting on a last ten record of 2-5-3 and a season record of 15-32-8. Regardless, the Sabres continue to push on. They will be looking for a home rink advantage tonight in hopes of increasing their record as well as break their two game losing streak. For aid in doing so, they Sabres will be looking to forward, Steve Ott. They will also be looking for the help of Gold Medal hopeful, American goaltender, Ryan Miller, who has the sixth BEST save percentage in the League, .925, even though he has faced 1,339 shots this season.
By looking at the Penguins record you would never be able to guess that they are missing some key players due to injury. Defensemen, Kris Letang will miss his fourth straight due to illness. Forwards, Tyler Pyatt, Beau Bennet, Pascal Dupuis, Chris Conner, and Joe Vitale, are all out with their respected injuries. The Penguins are also without backup goaltender, Tomas Vokoun, who is still out due to a blood clot. The Sabres are on the healthier side, however they are missing some key guys due to injury. Defensemen, Tyler Myers and Mike Weber did not practice on Tuesday and will not be in the Sabres lineup tonight. Forwards, Cody McCormick and Matt Moulson are both out with upper body injuries.
All in all, tonight matchup is pretty lopsided. It will be as close to a blowout as a normal Sabres and Penguins game, but not as much of a blowout as that Super Bowl last Sunday. I'm giving the game to the Penguins 3-1.