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Sabres at Red Wings preview

Buffalo seeking ninth straight win; Athanasiou looks to stay hot for Detroit

by Dave Hogg / NHL.com Correspondent

SABRES (15-6-2) at RED WINGS (10-10-2)

7 p.m. ET; FS-D, MSG-B, NHL.TV

 

The Game

The Buffalo Sabres will be trying to win their ninth straight game when they play the Detroit Red Wings at Little Caesars Arena on Saturday.

The Sabres have won nine in a row twice, in 1976-77 and 1979-80. The team record is 10 wins in a row, done twice (1983-84, 2006-07).

Buffalo defeated the Montreal Canadiens 3-2 in overtime on Friday. Jeff Skinner scored the tying goal with 2:26 left in regulation and the winning goal at 3:06 of overtime to post the eighth eight-game winning streak in Sabres history.

The Red Wings had won six of their past seven games (6-1-0) before a 3-1 defeat against the Washington Capitals on Friday.

 

Players to watch

Skinner has 23 points (16 goals, seven assists) in his past 17 games and is tied for the NHL goal lead (17) with David Pastrnak of the Boston Bruins.

Red Wings forward Andreas Athanasiou has nine points (six goals, three assists) in his past seven games, including three goals in the past two.

 
They said it

"I think we're enjoying this for sure. We don't want to lose. Who wants to lose? You want to win every game you go out and play, and we've got another tough test in Detroit against a team that's playing very well." -- Buffalo center Jack Eichel

"We know in this room that we can compete with every team in the league on a nightly basis. Washington is obviously a very good team on their home ice, but we want to challenge ourselves against the best every night." -- Red Wings forward Justin Abdelkader

 

Sabres projected lineup

Jeff Skinner -- Jack Eichel -- Jason Pominville

Tage Thompson -- Vladimir Sobotka -- Sam Reinhart

Conor Sheary -- Casey Mittelstadt -- Kyle Okposo

Zemgus Girgensons -- Johan Larsson -- Evan Rodrigues

Jake McCabe -- Rasmus Ristolainen

Rasmus Dahlin -- Zach Bogosian

Nathan Beaulieu -- Marco Scandella

Linus Ullmark

Carter Hutton

Scratched: Remi Elie, Lawrence Pilut, Casey Nelson

Injured: Patrik Berglund (upper body), Scott Wilson (ankle), Matt Hunwick (neck)

 

Red Wings projected lineup

Anthony Mantha -- Dylan Larkin -- Justin Abdelkader 

Gustav Nyquist -- Frans Nielsen -- Andreas Athanasiou

Tyler Bertuzzi -- Luke Glendening -- Michael Rasmussen

Thomas Vanek -- Jacob de la Rose -- Christoffer Ehn

Trevor Daley -- Mike Green

Danny DeKeyser -- Nick Jensen

Niklas Kronwall -- Dennis Cholowski 

Jimmy Howard

Jonathan Bernier

Scratched: Luke Witkowski, Martin Frk

Injured: Evgeny Svechnikov (knee surgery), Jonathan Ericsson (undisclosed), Darren Helm (upper body)

 

Status report

Scandella played 15:00 against Montreal after missing Buffalo's previous game with a lower-body injury. … Ehn was recalled before the game in Washington to replace Frk on the fourth line. Vanek has taken over Frk's power-play time.

 
Stat pack

Eichel has seven points (one goal, six assists) in a five-game point streak. … Howard is 6-1-0 with a .936 save percentage in his past seven starts.

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