The final game of the season series between the Leafs and the Sabres is upon us. For those of us who thought this game would be more meaningful (at the middle of the regular season), well, I guess the joke is on us.
Actually, the game is meaningful to the Sabres, who are chasing the Capitals after their last nightâ€™s loss against Steven Stamkos and the Tampa Bay Lightning. Itâ€™s also relevant to the Leafs because of the draft lottery – that much is obvious.
Each team won all their home games in the season series and the Sabres will likely want to continue that trend in tonightâ€™s game. Given all our injuries and recent form, I wouldnâ€™t advise betting against it.
With both James Reimer (upper body) and Jonas Gustavsson (lower body) ailing, Ben Scrivens figures to get the start again.Â Forwards Joffrey Lupul (shoulder) and Nikolai Kulemin (finger), David Steckel (lower body) and Mikhail Grabovski (leg) are also sidelined for tonightâ€™s game.
The Sabres will be most likely be missing Tyler Myers, fellow defenseman Mike Weber (upper body) and forward Nathan Gerbe (upper body) who are all day-to-day for Buffalo, while defenseman Christian Ehrhoff (knee) and forward Matt Ellis (knee) are out indefinitely.
QUOTE TO NOTE:
“You want to come out and be confident, that’s how I play the game. When I am with the (AHL) Marlies, I am trying to play that same game. It’s not a matter of trying to do one thing or another for a specific situation. I play best when I am at the top of the crease when I am in a good ready stance and when I can play the puck and help the guys break the puck out. The intention was just to play my game.”
– Ben Scrivens
WHO TO WATCH:
Joey Crabb has been my far the most productive Leaf in the season series, scoring two goals and grabbing three assists in the five games played between the two teams. The next top producer is out for tonightâ€™s game (Mikhail Grabovski, 3 goals, 1 assist).
Surprisingly, at least Don Cherry thinks so, Nazem Kadri’s call up assignment was taken by Joe Colborne. Let’s see how it goes before criticizing it. Also, let’s not fight Brian Burke in a barn, a route which Don is currently going down.