With my trip to Finland I was not able to watch all the Sabres games due to the time difference and being at the World Juniors. However, I watched all the condensed games on NHL GameCenter since my return. Unfortunately the Sabres are on a 6 game losing streak right now, with an afternoon date in Winnipeg coming up tomorrow. Winnipeg is only playing .500 hockey and has 6 more points than Buffalo, despite the Sabres losing streak. This game marks the return of Evander Kane and Zach Bogosian to Winnpieg and sees Tyler Myers and Drew Stafford face their former team.
The games while I was away featured some notable performances by Jack Eichel and some good goaltending despite the losses. In terms of goaltending, help is on the way as Robin Lehner is healthy again and in the AHL for a conditioning stint with the Amerks. He got the win last night during the Amerks 60th anniversary celebration.
Overall the team needs another impact defenseman to help take the load off Rasmus Ristolainen. He did not look as sharp in the past two weeks as he had the previous month. Now that the trade market has heated up it will be interesting to see what happens from here to the deadline. With this losing streak the Sabres are starting to fall back from the playoff group. However, they are only 11 points back with half their games to be played. So a push for a playoff berth is not out of the question, though I don’t expect Tim Murray to chase the playoffs at the expense of the future. Especially with the new lottery format coming for the 2016 draft I have no problem missing the playoffs one more year to secure additional top end talent.
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