SABRES (23-14-6) at HURRICANES (20-18-5)
7:30 p.m. ET; NHLN, FS-CR, MSG-B, NHL.TV
Jeff Skinner will face his former Carolina Hurricanes teammates for the first time with the Buffalo Sabres when they meet at PNC Arena on Friday.
The forward, traded to the Sabres by the Hurricanes for forward Cliff Pu and three draft picks on Aug. 2, has three goals in his past three games and 42 points (29 goals, 13 assists) in 43 games for Buffalo, 3-5-1 in its past nine games.
Skinner played the first eight seasons of his NHL career with Carolina and scored at least 20 goals six times, including an NHL career-high 37 in 2016-17. He won the Calder Trophy as NHL rookie of the year in 2010-11.
Sabres center Jack Eichel will return after missing three games with an upper-body injury.
The Hurricanes will try to win for the sixth time in seven games; they're 5-1-0 in their past six and have scored at least four goals in four of their past five.
Players to watch
Sabres center Jack Eichel has nine points (six goals, three assists) in nine games against the Hurricanes and 17 points (10 goals, seven assists) in his past 12 games.
Hurricanes forward Justin Williams, who scored his 300th NHL goal in a 3-1 loss at the Tampa Bay Lightning on Thursday, has five points (four goals, one assist) in a five-game point streak.
They said it
"Obviously there's a lot of stuff that goes through your head when you look back at it. I have nothing but great memories here, good friendships. The fans treated me exceptionally well. I had a great time playing here. It will be a little weird, a little different, being on the visiting side." -- Sabres forward Jeff Skinner
"We've got to win every night to get back in this. We were in a good position (leading 1-0 in the third period at Tampa Bay), and to lose it that way, that's a tough position. You'd almost rather lose 8-0. We're going to have to pick the guys up tonight and get ready to go." -- Hurricanes coach Rod Brind'Amour
Sabres projected lineup
Jeff Skinner -- Jack Eichel -- Tage Thompson
Conor Sheary -- Vladimir Sobotka -- Sam Reinhart
Evan Rodrigues -- Johan Larsson -- Kyle Okposo
Zemgus Girgensons -- Casey Mittelstadt -- Jason Pominville
Lawrence Pilut -- Rasmus Ristolainen
Rasmus Dahlin -- Zach Bogosian
Marco Scandella -- Jake McCabe
Scratched: Matt Hunwick, Nathan Beaulieu, Remi Elie, C.J. Smith
Injured: Casey Nelson (upper body), Scott Wilson (ankle)
Hurricanes projected lineup
Brock McGinn -- Sebastian Aho -- Teuvo Teravainen
Micheal Ferland -- Lucas Wallmark -- Jordan Martinook
Andrei Svechnikov -- Greg McKegg -- Justin Williams
Warren Foegele -- Victor Rask -- Saku Maenalanen
Jaccob Slavin -- Brett Pesce
Calvin de Haan -- Justin Faulk
Trevor van Riemsdyk -- Dougie Hamilton
Injured: Jordan Staal (upper body), Clark Bishop (lower body)
The Hurricanes did not hold a morning skate. Staal and Bishop each skated after Buffalo's morning skate.
Aho has six points (one goal, five assists) in his past five games. … McElhinney is 3-0-0 with a 2.00 goals-against average and .923 save percentage in his past three starts.