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Preview: Sabres at Flames

Calgary goalie Chad Johnson to face former team

by Aaron Vickers / NHL.com Correspondent

SABRES (1-1-0) at FLAMES (0-2-1)

9 p.m. ET; SNF, MSG-B, NHL.TV

 
Sabres team scope

Forward Nicholas Baptiste will make his NHL debut against the Flames. "I think he's going to have a ton of adrenaline and a ton of jump in his step tonight," coach Dan Bylsma said. "That's where he needs to be effective. That's where he can be effective. He's a big kid who can skate like the wind. That's what he's got to be ready to do tonight." Baptiste was recalled from Rochester of the American Hockey League after forward Jack Eichel (high-ankle sprain) was placed on injured reserve on Oct. 15. Baptiste, who was selected in the third round (No. 69) in the 2013 NHL Draft, will have family in attendance for the game. "It's a big moment for Nick," Bylsma said. "It's a big moment for his family. Sometimes I feel like you might need to just spring it on him last second so they don't get too caught up in the emotion and the moment. We want him to have his family here to experience the game with him." Goaltender Robin Lehner is expected to start for the Sabres, who will look to build on their 6-2 win at the Edmonton Oilers on Sunday. "He brings that intensity every game," forward Ryan O'Reilly said. "He's competitive. No matter what it is, whether it's a scrum or a shot, he's always there. He always wants to prove he's the best. When he's doing that, he's a really effective goalie."

Video: BUF@EDM: Lehner robs Puljujarvi on the doorstep

 
Flames team scope

Goaltender Chad Johnson will start against the Sabres. Johnson, who won 22 games and had a 2.36 goals against average and .920 save percentage in 45 games for Buffalo last season, signed a one-year contract worth $1.7 million with Calgary on July 1. "My approach is the same," Johnson said. "It's a hockey team and it's a hockey game. I've had this experience a few times here now over the past few years. I just prepare the same way. You use it as motivation and excitement, too." Johnson is making his first start with the Flames at Scotiabank Saddledome. He grew up in Calgary after being born in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan. "I think once the game's over I'll enjoy it, but when I'm in the moment I'm there to stop pucks and that's where my focus is," he said. "I think looking back in my career when I'm done eventually, it'll be special." Johnson's first start with the Flames came in a 2-1 shootout loss at the Vancouver Canucks on Saturday. Calgary is 0-2-1 to start the season. "You don't want to panic or anything, but you want to get points at the beginning of the year," Johnson said. "You don't want to be fighting the last half of the season to try to win games because you had a bad start."

Video: CGY@VAN: Johnson fights off Virtanen's wrist shot

 
Sabres projected lineup

Sam Reinhart -- Ryan O'Reilly -- Kyle Okposo

Marcus Foligno -- Johan Larsson -- Brian Gionta

Tyler Ennis -- Derek Grant -- Matt Moulson

Nicolas Deslauriers -- Zemgus Girgensons -- Nicholas Baptiste

Josh Gorges -- Rasmus Ristolainen

Jake McCabe -- Zach Bogosian

Dmitry Kulikov - Cody Franson

Robin Lehner

Anders Nilsson

Scratched: Hudson Fasching, Casey Nelson

Injured: Jack Eichel (ankle), Evander Kane (ribs)

 
Flames projected lineup

Johnny Gaudreau -- Sean Monahan -- Kris Versteeg

Matthew Tkachuk -- Sam Bennett -- Troy Brouwer

Lance Bouma -- Mikael Backlund -- Michael Frolik

Micheal Ferland -- Matt Stajan -- Alex Chiasson

Mark Giordano -- TJ Brodie

Jyrki Jokipakka -- Dougie Hamilton

Brett Kulak -- Deryk Engelland

Chad Johnson

Brian Elliott

Scratched: Dennis Wideman, Nicklas Grossmann, Freddie Hamilton

Injured: Ladislav Smid (neck)

 
Status report

Eichel is expected to miss 6-8 weeks. Kane broke multiple ribs crashing into the end boards against Montreal on Oct. 13 and is expected to be out several weeks. …The Flames held an optional skate Tuesday morning. Defenseman Dennis Wideman is expected to be a healthy scratch for a second consecutive game.

 

 
Who's hot

O'Reilly had two goals and four points in Buffalo's 6-2 win at the Edmonton Oilers on Sunday. Defenseman Rasmus Ristolainen, who signed a signed a six-year contract worth $32.4 million and an average annual value of $5.4 million with the Sabres on Oct. 11, has four assists in two games. … Flames forwards Troy Brouwer and Michael Frolik each have two goals in Calgary's first three games.

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