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Game Day: Preds vs. Sabres

by Brooks Bratten / Nashville Predators

(39-13-7) Nashville Predators vs. Buffalo Sabres (17-38-4)
  5 P.M. | First Niagara Center
TV: FS-TN | Radio: 102.5 The Game

After falling in a shootout just over 24 hours ago to Philadelphia, the Nashville Predators are looking for their first win in the final game of a three-game road trip as they take on the Buffalo Sabres this evening. Nashville fell 5-2 to the Islanders on Thursday night before a 3-2 shootout loss to the Flyers on Saturday afternoon.

Tonight marks the eighth back-to-back situation for the Preds this season. Nashville's record on the front end is 5-0-3 while owning a 2-3-2 record on the back half.

Defenseman Cody Franson and forward Mike Santorelli both skated with the Preds on Saturday afternoon against Philly for the first time since they were acquired from Toronto one week ago. Santorelli, who saw time on a line with Matt Cullen and Calle Jarnkrok played 12:11 and registered one shot on goal. Skating with Mattias Ekholm to start the game, Franson recorded two shots and blocked three in 17:52 of ice time.

Colin Wilson tallied the first of Nashville's two goals on Saturday against the Flyers, improving his point total to 19 in his last 21 games. Wilson, in the midst of a career year with 39 points, is one goal shy of hitting the 20-goal plateau for the first time in his career. He is tied for 10th in the NHL in game-winning goals with five. Wilson is just one assist away from 100 for his career.

Rookie Filip Forsberg leads the Preds in points with 51 (20g-31a) and has 12 points in his last 15 games. Forsberg also leads all League rookies in goals, assists and points.

Tyler Ennis leads the struggling Sabres in points this season with 32, while Zemgus Girgensons (27) and Matt Moulson (25) are next in the point tally for Buffalo. Goaltender Jhonas Enroth was dealt to Dallas earlier this season, leaving Michal Neuvirth to carry the load in net. Neuvirth is 4-16-2 on the season, but his .914 save percentage is respectable.

Buffalo sits last in the Eastern Conference, going 1-3-1 in their last five and 3-6-1 in their last 10 games. The Sabres are 11-18-2 at home this season while Nashville is 14-10-6 on the road.

On the season, the Preds are 15-6-2 against Eastern Conference opponents this season, facing teams from the opposing conference in eight of their last 11 outings, earning a record of 6-1-1.

This evening's meeting with Buffalo is the first of two between the Preds and Sabres this season, just Nashville's third visit to Buffalo since 2011. Nashville is 6-1-(0)-1 all-time at the First Niagara Center and 9-6-(0)-2 all-time.
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