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Preview: Sabres at Devils

New Jersey aims to end seven-game losing streak at home; goalie Robin Lehner to start for Buffalo

by Mike G. Morreale @mikemorrealeNHL / NHL.com Staff Writer

SABRES (21-20-10) at DEVILS (22-21-10)

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

 

Sabres team scope

The Buffalo Sabres are 2-5-1 in their past eight road games and trail the Philadelphia Flyers by seven points for the second wild card into the Stanley Cup Playoffs from the Eastern Conference. Goaltender Robin Lehner, who made 37 saves in a 4-0 win against the Ottawa Senators on Saturday, will start. He is 1-4-1 with a 2.79 goals-against average and .906 save percentage in six games against the New Jersey Devils. Center Ryan O'Reilly has three goals and 10 assists in 14 games since returning from an appendectomy. The Sabres are 16-3-1 (.825) when center Jack Eichel scores at least two points, including 8-0-0 this season. Buffalo did not conduct a morning skate Monday.

 

Devils team scope

The Devils are five points out of the second wild card into the playoffs from the Eastern Conference and will try to end a seven-game losing streak at Prudential Center (0-5-2), where they play eight of their final nine games this month. New Jersey hasn't won consecutive games since a 2-1 overtime victory at the Vancouver Canucks on Jan. 15. "We play 82 games and we'll have some big wins against good teams but we need to come out and be just as good the next night," defenseman Ben Lovejoy said. "We haven't done that quite as consistently as we need to and it's something that we're trying to learn how to do." Goalie Cory Schneider is expected to start. Schneider is 6-3-2 with a 1.61 GAA and .931 save percentage in 11 games against the Sabres. Left wing Taylor Hall had his third two-goal effort of the season and a season-high eight shots on goal in a 5-1 win at the Columbus Blue Jackets on Saturday. The Devils will take their mandated five days off after playing the Sabres before resuming play against the San Jose Sharks on Sunday.

 

Sabres projected lineup

Matt Moulson -- Ryan O'Reilly -- Kyle Okposo

Marcus Foligno -- Jack Eichel -- Sam Reinhart

Evander Kane -- Zemgus Girgensons -- Brian Gionta

Tyler Ennis -- Nicolas Deslauriers -- Justin Bailey

Dmitry Kulikov -- Rasmus Ristolainen

Jake McCabe -- Cody Franson

Josh Gorges -- Justin Falk

Robin Lehner

Anders Nilsson

Scratched: Taylor Fedun

Injured: William Carrier (knee), Zach Bogosian (rib), Johan Larsson (wrist)

 

Devils projected lineup

Taylor Hall -- Travis Zajac -- Kyle Palmieri

Miles Wood -- Adam Henrique -- Michael Cammalleri

Pavel Zacha -- Jacob Josefson -- Stefan Noesen

Joseph Blandisi -- Sergey Kalinin -- PA Parenteau

Andy Greene -- Ben Lovejoy

Karl Stollery -- Steven Santini

Seth Helgeson -- Damon Severson

Cory Schneider

Keith Kinkaid

Scratched: Devante Smith-Pelly

Injured: Jon Merrill (upper body), Beau Bennett (lower body), John Moore (concussion), Kyle Quincey (upper body)

 

Status report

Bogosian did not travel to New Jersey and remains day to day. ... The Sabres signed Falk to a one-year, $650,000 contract. ... Buffalo claimed forward Derek Grant off waivers from the Nashville Predators and assigned him to Rochester of the American Hockey League. … Carrier remains out with a knee injury. "It's a wear-and-tear injury for [Carrier]," Bylsma told the Buffalo News. "Probably bone bruise would be the best description of what he's dealing with in his knee."... Quincey is day to day. Stollery was recalled from Albany of the AHL.

 

Who's hot

Kane has two goals and seven points in his past six games. ... Hall has two goals and two assists in a three-game point streak. … Henrique has three goals and six points during a four-game point streak. … Palmieri has three goals and four point in a three-game point streak.

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