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by Scott Miner / Buffalo Sabres

With the series tied at two, the Sabres are back in Philadelphia for Game 5 of the Eastern Conference Quarterfinals. The focus of the series has swung toward a physical style of play, and the Sabres have certainly shown a willingness and an ability to increase the intensity.  Buffalo collected 24 hits on Wednesday night with Tyler Myers leading the charge with five.

Head coach Lindy Ruff knows that intensity and physical play are what will lead his team to a victory.

“The emotion in this series has been great,” said Ruff. “I think it got ramped up a little bit, and I think it will be the guys on the ice who dictate who wins this series.”

4/22 - Lindy Ruff Pre-Game

The Sabres spent the majority of their morning skate working on the power play. Buffalo’s special teams are on opposite sides of the spectrum with its penalty kill at 90.5% for the series while the man-advantage units are producing at a 15.8% (3-for-19) rate.  Perhaps the most frustrating moment of the series, in terms of special teams, was the five-minute power play that Buffalo had in the third period of Wednesday night’s game. The Sabres started the final period with the man advantage after Flyers captain Mike Richards was assessed a major penalty for elbowing. The Sabres struggled to get anything going, managing just two shots during the power play and had trouble gaining entry into the Philadelphia zone for stretches of time. 

Look for defenseman Jordan Leopold to make a return to Buffalo’s power play. Ruff stated this morning that Leopold would get an opportunity to make a return to the special teams tonight.

Flyers forwards Andreas Nodl and Jeff Carter are listed as day-to-day with injuries according to  Defenseman Chris Pronger did participate in the morning skate for Philadelphia and remained on the ice for several minutes after, shooting pucks at the empty net. His status still remains day-to-day as Head Coach Peter Laviolette refused to comment on any changes to his lineup.

4/22 - Peter Laviolette Pre-Game

The game is set for 7:30 p.m. and can be seen on MSG, TSN and Versus. Follow all the play-by-play with and check back after the game for post-game reactions from players, coaches and more!

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