SABRES (14-29-3) at RED WINGS (25-11-9)
DETROIT – The Detroit Red Wings and Buffalo Sabres, who play Sunday at Joe Louis Arena (8 p.m. ET; NBCSN), are going in opposite directions.
Detroit (25-11-9) is tied for second place in the Atlantic Division. Buffalo (14-29-3) is last in the Eastern Conference and tied for the worst record in the NHL with the Edmonton Oilers.
The Red Wings and Sabres each played Saturday. Detroit won its third straight and seventh in its past 10 games with a 5-2 victory against the Nashville Predators at Joe Louis Arena. The Red Wings were led by the youthful second line of Riley Sheahan between Tomas Tatar and Gustav Nyquist. Tatar (two goals, assist) reached the 20-goal mark for the first time in his career. Nyquist had a goal and an assist. Sheahan had two assists.
"Every game you kind of get more and more comfortable and you build more confidence. I think our whole team together, we complement each other really well," Sheahan said. "We've got good chemistry. When you put us all together, it's fun playing, especially when you're on the front end."
Buffalo's 4-3 loss to the Philadelphia Flyers on Saturday was its 10th straight regulation defeat.
"The effort was there and obviously some of the things that happened when you have a couple young defensemen, that's going to happen occasionally," Sabres coach Ted Nolan told NHL.com after the game. "But at least the effort was way better."
Sunday is the Sabres' final game before the All-Star break, which ends Jan. 26.
Here are the projected lineups:
Brian Flynn – Zemgus Girgensons – Chris Stewart
Matt Moulson – Torrey Mitchell – Tyler Ennis
Cody Hodgson – Philip Varone – Drew Stafford
Nicolas Deslauriers – Matt Ellis – Patrick Kaleta
Tyler Myers – Josh Gorges
Nikita Zadorov – Rasmus Ristolainen
Andre Benoit – Tyson Strachan
Scratched: Andrej Meszaros
Injured: Mike Weber (lower body), Brian Gionta (head), Cody McCormick (blood clot in leg), Marcus Foligno (hand)
Henrik Zetterberg - Pavel Datsyuk - Justin Abdelkader
Gustav Nyquist - Riley Sheahan - Tomas Tatar
Stephen Weiss - Darren Helm - Teemu Pulkkinen
Drew Miller - Luke Glendening - Joakim Andersson
Jonathan Ericsson - Niklas Kronwall
Kyle Quincey - Danny DeKeyser
Brendan Smith - Xavier Ouellet
Scratched: Daniel Cleary, Brian Lashoff
Injured: Jakub Kindl (elbow), Tomas Jurco (back), Jonas Gustavsson (shoulder), Johan Franzen (head), Jimmy Howard (groin).
Status report: Mrazek has won all three starts in impressive fashion (five goals allowed) since Howard was injured. He will start Detroit's second game in two nights.
Who's hot: Girgensons had two goals in the loss in Philadelphia. Tatar has four goals and an assist in his past three games.