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Devils at Sabres preview

Hughes to miss second straight game for New Jersey; Buffalo is 2-1-2 in past five

by Heather Engel / Independent Correspondent

DEVILS (9-12-4) at SABRES (12-10-5)

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


The Game

The New Jersey Devils will be without Jack Hughes for the second straight game when they face the Buffalo Sabres at KeyBank Center on Monday.

The rookie forward, who sustained a lower-body injury in a 6-4 win against the Montreal Canadiens on Nov. 28, did not play in a 4-0 loss to the New York Rangers on Saturday.

New Jersey, which has lost four of its past six games, is 5-6-0 on the road this season but has won three of its past four away from home.

Buffalo is 2-1-2 in its past five games after losing nine of its previous 10 (1-7-2).


Players to watch

Devils forward Blake Coleman has six points (four goals, two assists) in his past four games.

Sabres captain Jack Eichel has 16 points (eight goals, eight assists) in a nine-game point streak.


They said it

"A lot of luck, able to be healthy, play with a lot of good guys here, good teammates and good players. It's not something you really reflect on now. I think it's more something when it's over and done with, but obviously, it's a great honor." -- Devils captain Andy Greene on tying Scott Niedermayer for seventh in New Jersey history in games played (892)

"We just feel there's a real consistency coming into our 5-on-5 game that gives us a chance every night against some of the best teams in the League. It has also helped the confidence. … I think we've been much more mature, whether we scored and took leads, or we fell behind and needed to scrape ourselves back out of it. You could really feel a consistency in understanding what we need to do to be the best team we can be. It's a good feeling in the room right now, a confident feeling." -- Sabres coach Ralph Krueger


Devils projected lineup

Jesper Boqvist -- Nico Hischier -- Kyle Palmieri

Taylor Hall -- Pavel Zacha -- Jesper Bratt

Blake Coleman -- Travis Zajac -- Nikita Gusev

Miles Wood -- Kevin Rooney -- Wayne Simmonds

Andy Greene -- Damon Severson

Sami Vatanen -- P.K. Subban

Will Butcher -- Matt Tennyson

Louis Domingue

Mackenzie Blackwood

Scratched: Mirco Mueller, John Hayden

Injured: Connor Carrick (finger), Jack Hughes (lower body)


Sabres projected lineup

Victor Olofsson -- Jack Eichel -- Sam Reinhart

Jimmy Vesey -- Marcus Johansson -- Casey Mittelstadt

Jeff Skinner -- Johan Larsson -- Conor Sheary

Zemgus Girgensons -- Rasmus Asplund

Brandon Montour -- Rasmus Ristolainen

Jake McCabe -- Zach Bogosian

Marco Scandella -- Henri Jokiharju

Colin Miller

Linus Ullmark

Carter Hutton

Scratched: Curtis Lazar, Jean-Sebastien Dea

Injured: Rasmus Dahlin (concussion), Evan Rodrigues (lower body), Kyle Okposo (concussion), Tage Thompson (upper body), Vladimir Sobotka (lower body)


Status report

Okposo skated with the team for the first time since sustaining a concussion Nov. 16. Dahlin watched the morning skate from the bench.


Stat pack

Olofsson has a point in 10 of his past 12 games (four goals, six assists). … Gusev has three assists in his past two games. … Hischier has four assists in his past five games.

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