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game preview

Devils at Sabres preview

New Jersey without forwards Stafford, Palmieri; Buffalo seeking first victory

by Joe Yerdon / Correspondent

DEVILS (1-0-0) at SABRES (0-1-1)

3 p.m. ET; MSG-B, MSG, NHL.TV


The Game

Buffalo Sabres centers Sam Reinhart and Ryan O'Reilly likely will switch lines when they face the New Jersey Devils. Reinhart skated between Benoit Pouliot and Kyle Okposo on Sunday, and O'Reilly played between Zemgus Girgensons and Seth Griffith. Neither Reinhart nor Okposo has a point in Buffalo's first two games.

The Sabres need depth scoring. They've gotten all of their offense from the top line of Evander Kane, Jack Eichel and Jason Pominville. Kane scored twice and Eichel had one in a 6-3 loss at the New York Islanders on Saturday, and Pominville had two goals against the Montreal Canadiens in a 3-2 shootout loss on Thursday.

The Devils will play without forwards Kyle Palmieri an Drew Stafford, each of whom has a lower-body injury. They were injured during a 4-1 victory against the Colorado Avalanche on Saturday and were unable to practice Sunday. The Devils will go with 11 forwards and seven defensemen.


Players to watch

Devils defenseman Will Butcher had three assists against the Avalanche, the team that selected him in the fifth round (No. 123) of the 2013 NHL Draft. He opted to become an unrestricted free agent and signed with the Devils on Aug. 27.

Kane's scored two shorthanded goals in the second period against the Islanders. He leads the Sabres with four points (two goals, two assists) and is plus-3.


They said it

"We want to continue what we've done, I think, in presesason and then [Saturday] night in the way that we've played. It's nice that you go through the preseason we have quite a few road games, too. We want to have a strong focus level and be able to get right back to our game and play how we want to play and play to our advantage." -- Hynes

"I think we've got to execute better; a little more bite in our game, better puck decisions. Nobody said it's going to be easy. You're not just going to put a new system in place and get new guys in place and just expect to go out there and win; that everybody's just going to hand it to you." -- Sabres right wing Kyle Okposo


Devils projected lineup

Taylor Hall -- Pavel Zacha -- Jesper Bratt

Marcus Johansson -- Nico Hischier -- Jimmy Hayes

Miles Wood -- Adam Henrique -- Stefan Noesen

Brian Gibbons -- Blake Coleman

Andy Greene -- Damon Severson

Mirco Mueller -- Steven Santini

John Moore -- Will Butcher

Ben Lovejoy

Cory Schneider

Keith Kinkaid

Scratched: Dalton Prout

Injured: Drew Stafford (lower body), Kyle Palmieri (lower body)


Sabres projected lineup

Evander Kane -- Jack Eichel -- Jason Pominville

Benoit Pouliot -- Sam Reinhart -- Kyle Okposo

Zemgus Girgensons -- Ryan O'Reilly -- Seth Griffith

Johan Larsson -- Jacob Josefson -- Matt Moulson

Nathan Beaulieu -- Rasmus Ristolainen

Jake McCabe -- Victor Antipin

Marco Scandella -- Matt Tennyson

Chad Johnson

Robin Lehner

Scratched: Jordan Nolan, Josh Gorges

Injured: Justin Falk (undisclosed), Zach Bogosian (lower body)


Status report

Wood and Lovejoy will make their season debuts. … Bogosian has yet to play after being injured in a preseason game on Sept. 29.


Stat pack

All four of the Devils goals against the Avalanche came on special teams (three on the power play, one shorthanded). … The Sabres have allowed three shorthanded goals in their first two games, including two during the same second-period power play against the Islanders

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