NHL Preview from The Sports Network
Saturday, January 14th (All times eastern)
Buffalo Sabres (19-19-5) at New York Islanders (15-20-6), 7 p.m.
(Sports Network) - After picking up their third victory in 12 games last night, the Buffalo Sabres hope to string together some wins beginning with tonight's opener of a seven-game road trip against the New York Islanders.
The Sabres saw their road losing streak extended to seven games in a row with a 2-0 loss at Toronto on Tuesday, falling to 8-10-0 as the guest this season. Buffalo, though, avoided a home-and-home sweep by winning 3-2 over the visiting Maple Leafs on Friday.
Matt Ellis and Paul Gaustad scored goals on the Sabres' first three shots before the Maple Leafs scored twice to tie the game. Jason Pominville, though, scored the game-winner in the second period to give Buffalo a 3-7-2 mark over its past 12 games.
Ryan Miller made 24 saves to help Buffalo snap a three-game slide.
"That was a good, hard game," Sabres head coach Lindy Ruff said. "I thought we really got the short end of the stick on some of the calls, but we battled through it."
The Islanders come into this game having lost three of four, including Thursday's 3-2 loss to the Flyers. Kyle Okposo scored and John Tavares tallied with 15.7 seconds left in regulation to push his point streak to a career-high seven games in a row. The All-Star has four goals and nine assists over that span.
Evgeni Nabokov allowed three goals on 22 shots and failed to secure his 300th career win.
"When we play as well as we did tonight, you'd think we'd come out on top most times," Islanders defenseman Andrew MacDonald said. "The fact is, when we play them, we don't always play that well. I think if we continue to play the way we played tonight, we're going to have success."
The Islanders have lost eight in a row and 26 of 28 to the Flyers, but have had better success against the Sabres. New York's 2-1 win at Buffalo on Nov. 29, which featured goals from Matt Moulson and Brian Rolston, was the Islanders' sixth victory in eight games versus the Sabres.
Buffalo has also dropped six of its last nine on Long Island.
01/14 10:33:05 ET