Season Series: 1-0-0
All-Time Record: 171 gp (85-60-20-7)
Leading Scorers: PHI: 39pts, Voracek (13g-26a) | BUF: 27pts, Okposo (12g-15a)
Power Play: (PHI: 31-for-144, 21.5%, 9th) (BUF: 28-for-128, 21.9%, T-6th)
Penalty Kill: (PHI: 98-of-120, 81.7%, 17th) (BUF: 87-for-117, 74.3%, 29th)
The Flyers enter their third game in a four-night span, going 1-0-1 in their back-to-back set over the weekend… The Sabres play after a full two-days rest with their last game coming in a 4-3 win on Jan. 7 vs. Winnipeg… Buffalo is unbeaten in regulation in the New Year, going 2-0-1, but has dropped seven of their last 10 games… The Flyers have won five straight games against teams from the Atlantic Division and have more wins against the Atlantic than any other division (8).
2. BATTLE VS. BUFFALO
This is the second of three meetings against the Sabres and first of two in Buffalo… The Flyers won the first meeting of the year, 4-3, in a shootout on Oct. 25 and have earned at least a point in nine of their last 10 meetings with the Sabres, going 7-1-2… Brayden Schenn has four goals and five points in his last five games against the Sabres, while Ryan O'Reilly has six points (2g-4a) in his last four games against the Flyers.
3. DEFENSE FIRST
The Flyers defense continues to lead the NHL in scoring with a combined 99 points through 42 games with 23 goals and 76 assists… Last season, the Flyers D combined for 138 points (42g-96a) in 82 games… For the Sabres, Rasmus Ristolainen leads the defense with 26 points (3g-23a) which is tied for the fifth among all NHL defensemen, while ranking second all NHL d-men with 15 points on the power-play… Ristolainen also averages nearly 27 minutes of ice time per-game (26:50) which is fifth among NHL defensemen and second among all Eastern Conference d-men.
4. STARTING OFF RIGHT
The Sabres have 10 of their 15 wins and have earned 26 of their 39 points this season when scoring the first goal, going 10-2-6, while the Flyers have the second-most wins and second-most points in the NHL when they allow the first goal, going 12-12-3 with 27 points… The Flyers have allowed the first goal in their last five games… Wayne Simmonds leads the Flyers with three goals to open the game, while Zemgus Girgensons and Kyle Okposo lead Buffalo, also with three game-opening goals.
5. PLAYERS TO WATCH:
FLYERS (RW: #22 - Dale Weise)
Weise has had success against the Sabres in his career, posting four goals and six points in nine career games against Buffalo… Weise has a plus-minus rating of +2 and four shots on goal in his last two contests… Both of his goals this season and three of his four points have all come against Atlantic Division opponents.
SABRES (C: #15 - Jack Eichel)
Eichel missed the first 21 games of the season due to a high ankle sprain, but since his return has posted eight goals and 14 points in 18 games, which leads all Sabres in points per-game average (0.78)… The Sabres have earned points in 12 of the 18 games since his return to the lineup, going 8-6-4… He also comes into tonight's game with points in five of his last six games, recording three goals and six points in that stretch.
TODAY AT 50
On January 10, 1993… Rookie goaltender Tommy Soderstrom stops all 29 Edmonton Oilers shots in a 4-0 Flyers win at the Spectrum… The shutout is the first of his five during his rookie season and seven in his Flyers career over two seasons of play… Mark Recchi and Kevin Dineen each score twice apiece to support the effort offensively.