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Sharpen Up: All the Sabres news you need to know on December 12, 2019

Celebrate The Aud tonight when Buffalo takes on Nashville

by Chris Ryndak @ChrisRyndak / Sabres.com

Tonight at KeyBank Center, we're throwing it back to when the Sabres called Buffalo Memorial Auditorium home. It's Aud Night as Buffalo hosts the Nashville Predators. 

Faceoff is at 7 p.m. with pregame coverage on MSG starting at 6:30. For fans attending the game, they'll find a commemorative Aud Night T-shirt at their seat with the color representing one of the levels of The Aud. Tickets for the game are on sale now.

Nearly 20 alumni from the 1980s are in town as well. They'll meet fans in the 100 level and in the Seneca Sports Lounge before the game. Be in your seats by 6:55 as they'll be honored on the ice before a special video open plays.

Here's what you need to know. 

 

More on Aud Night

Before the game, the main Blue Zone Bar will host a happy hour with $5 Labatt drafts from 5 to 6:30 p.m. and live '80s music. The first 2,000 fans in attendance will also receive a special edition jersey koozie, courtesy of Labatt. All fans in attendance will find a T-shirt at their seat, and its color (red, blue, gold or orange) will correspond with a seating level of the Aud.

Click here for full details.

Video: Aud Night is Thursday

The following alumni are scheduled to attend:

Dave Andreychuk
Adam Creighton
Mike Foligno
Mike Hartman
Val James
Uwe Krupp
Kevin Maguire
Phil Myre
Wilf Paiement
Brent Peterson
Larry Playfair
Daren Puppa
Dave Schultz
Dave Snuggerud
John Tucker
John Van Boxmeer

Video: Sabres Memories: The Aud

Tweet from @BuffaloSabres: Dust off your neon shirts and high-waisted jeans...We're diving into the 80s on December 12! 🎟: https://t.co/g7StUYnI5Y pic.twitter.com/7DkPAEPe28

Check out a gallery of photos from the 1980s here. 

 

Tonight's matchup

From @SabresPR's Game notes…

  • The Sabres are 9-3-3 (.700) through their first 15 home games of the season, putting the team on pace to tie its ninth-best home record in a season. Buffalo has a plus-17 goal differential at home.

 

  • Jack Eichel enters today's game on a career-best 14-game point streak that began on Nov. 16. He has 12 goals, 25 points and a plus-16 rating during the streak.
  • Eichel's streak is the longest active point streak in the NHL and the second-longest streak in the league this season, one game shy of Patrick Kane's 15-game streak from Nov. 2 to 30 (11+13).

 

  • The streak is the longest by a Sabre since Tim Connolly tallied points in 16 consecutive games from Dec. 23, 2009 to Jan. 25, 2010. 
  • Only four players in Sabres history have recorded a point streak of more than 14 games: Dave Andreychuk (2x), Tim Connolly, Rick Martin and Gilbert Perreault.
  • Perreault holds Buffalo's franchise record with points in 18 consecutive games from Oct. 24 to Dec. 4, 1971 (10+21).

 

  • Eichel has totaled nine points (3+6) in eight career games against the Predators, including a franchise record-tying five assists on March 31, 2018 in Nashville.

 

  • Victor Olofsson has recorded 18 points (6+12) in his last 17 games, including two-point performances in four of the team's last five games.

 

  • Johan Larsson enters tonight's game with nine points (2+7) and a plus-9 rating in Buffalo's last seven contests. 
  • He's currently on his first three-game point streak since November 2016. With a point tonight, he'd tie his career-best four game streak from March 29 to April 5, 2016 (3+3).

 

  • Sam Reinhart has totaled five points (3+2) in Buffalo's last four games.

 

  • Linus Ullmark is 5-1-1 with a .923 save percentage in his last seven appearances. 
  • In those games, Ullmark has posted a .939 save percentage at 5-on-5.

 

  • This is the first of two meetings between the Sabres and Predators this season.
  • Last meeting: Nashville defeated Buffalo 3-2 in Buffalo on April 2
  • Next meeting: Saturday, Jan. 18 in Nashville
  • The Sabres are 3-5-2 in their last 10 games vs. the Predators; 1-6-3 at home.

 

Wednesday's practice

Video: AFTER PRACTICE: Ralph Krueger

From the Ice Level Practice Report…

At a glance, Johan Larsson's goal against the St. Louis Blues on Tuesday could be chalked up to a bit of good fortune. Zach Bogosian sent a shot wide of the net that caromed off the end boards and landed on Larsson's stick, and the forward banked his shot in off the pad of goalie Jake Allen. 

Rewind 12 seconds, though, and you'll find the part of the play that still stuck in Kyle Okposo's mind one day later. 

Larsson entered the offensive zone with possession of the puck and a tight gap between him and defenseman Justin Faulk. Rather than chip it into the corner and go on the forecheck, he deked and carried the puck down low. 

"He probably doesn't make that play maybe earlier in the season or the last couple years," Okposo said after practice Wednesday. "But he's got a lot of confidence right now, and it's definitely a contagious thing."

Larsson has long been a trusted defensive presence during his seven-year tenure with the Sabres. He had one of the most specialized roles in the NHL last season, with just 16.12 percent of his 5-on-5 faceoffs having come in the offensive zone. Only linemate Zemgus Girgensons had a lower percentage, according to NaturalStatTrick.com.

Read more here, which includes an update on Rasmus Dahlin.
 

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