– When the Boston Bruins battle the Buffalo Sabres at the First Niagara Center tonight, it won’t be the first time B’s winger Daniel Paille
faces off against his former team.
Paille has played the Sabres 10 times, but every time he goes back to the First Niagara Center he enjoys it.
“I mean obviously I have some history here, but I got family to see and family to meet so it’s always a memorable time to come back here,” Paille said. “I enjoy the times.”
The Sabres drafted Paille in 2002, and he played four seasons with the NHL club before being traded to the Bruins two games into his fifth season in 2009.
The Bruins have been struggling, but as of late they seem to have turned their game around with a 4-1 win against Washington Sunday.
Paille said he hopes to carry that momentum into the game tonight.
“We don’t want to change a thing,” Paille said. “Against Washington, we felt very confident and did the things we needed to do to get the win. It seemed like we were in control for most of the game and that’s how we have to play.
“Tonight is going to be another team fighting for a playoff spot and it’s not going to be easy for us. As nice as it was to have that feeling back against Washington, we need that back tonight.”
Buffalo (22-24-6) is last in the Northeast division, but they’ve won three out of their last four games and Head Coach Claude Julien doesn’t expect an easy win.
He acknowledged the heightened play of the Sabres in the last few games, but Julien said he is confident that the line of Gregory Campbell
, Shawn Thornton
and Paille will help thwart Buffalo’s efforts of picking up a win against the Bruins.
“There are times when our team’s a little slow out of the gate and those guys go out there and give us some good shifts – give us some energy,” Julien said. “And sometimes it’s through the line shifts – sometimes it’s through Thorny [Thornton] taking care of business the way he knows he can.
“So there is a lot of positivity that comes from that line.”
Paille understands the role of his line and he said he is looking forward to bringing the energy to the ice that will keep the Sabres off the puck and out of the score sheet.
“Well they seem to be finding their game now,” Paille said. “This time of the season for us we just have to take the body. It seems like the last couple of games we haven’t been as physical – we need to take the body as much as we can and don’t change anything from what we did last game because the way we play like that – we’re a good team.”--- Anthony Gulizia