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Sharpen Up: All the Sabres news you need to know on February 13, 2020

It's 2000s Night as Buffalo plays Columbus

by Chris Ryndak @ChrisRyndak / Sabres.com

Welcome to 2000s Night. 

The Sabres host the Columbus Blue Jackets tonight at KeyBank Center. Faceoff is at 7 p.m. with pregame coverage on MSG starting at 6:30. Tickets are on sale now. 

Click here for full details on what to expect before the game, including info on alumni appearances, the pregame ceremony honoring former owner Tom Golisano.  

Victor Olofsson and Kyle Okposo could return to the Sabres lineup, too.

Here's what else you need to know.

 

Wednesday's practice

Video: SABRES IN :50

From the Ice Level Practice Report…

Victor Olofsson and Kyle Okposo could both be back in the lineup for the Buffalo Sabres against the Columbus Blue Jackets on Thursday, coach Ralph Krueger said. 

Olofsson, who positioned himself as a potential Calder Trophy candidate with 16 goals and 35 points in 42 games, has been out since Jan. 2 with a lower-body injury. Okposo has missed six games with an upper-body ailment sustained on Jan. 30. 

Both were in their regular homes for practice on Wednesday: Olofsson on the left wing alongside Jack Eichel and Sam Reinhart, Okposo on the right wing next to Zemgus Girgensons and Johan Larsson. Olofsson was also back on the first power-play unit, manning the right flank. 

Video: AFTER PRACTICE: Krueger

"Victor Olofsson and Kyle Okposo both showed good signs here today," Krueger said. "We're going to assess post-practice and take a final look in the morning, but it looks like they're an option already for tomorrow. But we'll make that final call, again, tomorrow."

Olofsson returned to practice Saturday, while Okposo first joined the team for its morning skate on Tuesday. In each case, Krueger originally expected multiple practices to be necessary before the players would be reacclimated for game action. 

"What we like is just how good the rehabs work here and how fit they feel within a couple of days," Krueger said. "I've seen this multiple times this year, so it's just a compliment to the work that's being done in the preparation for these players returning. We just like where they're at right now and it's looking good."

The Sabres did practice without forward Marcus Johansson, who took a maintenance day after tallying a goal and an assist in the win over Detroit on Tuesday. Krueger said Johansson is day-to-day with an upper-body injury and will be re-evaluated prior to Thursday's game.

Read the full story here.


Tonight's matchup 

From @SabresPR's Game Notes…

  • This is the third and final meeting between the Sabres and Blue Jackets this season.
  • Last meeting: Buffalo defeated Columbus 2-1 (OT) in Buffalo on Feb. 1
  • The Sabres are 4-4-2 in their last 10 games vs. the Blue Jackets; 4-5-1 at home.
  • With a victory tonight, the Sabres would win their season series against the Blue Jackets for the first time since 2015-16.

 

  • Today's game is the ninth in a 20-day stretch during which the Sabres play nine of 10 games at home. The lone road game during that span was a 3-2 win on Friday at NY Rangers. The final game of this stretch will take place on Sunday vs. Toronto.

 

  • Sam Reinhart has recorded 16 points (9+7) in 16 games since the beginning of January. His nine goals during that stretch tied for eighth-most in the league entering play Wednesday.

 

  • Jack Eichel has totaled eight points (4+4) in seven career home games against the Blue Jackets.
  • Jeff Skinner has recorded 14 points (7+7) in his last 15 meetings with Columbus, including four points (3+1) in five games since joining the Sabres.

 

  • Rasmus Dahlin has posted four assists in five career games against the Blue Jackets, including an assist in each of this season's previous matchups.
  • Evan Rodrigues, who scored in the last meeting between the Sabres and Blue Jackets, has totaled five points (4+1) in his last seven games against Columbus.


Share your #Sabres50 Valentines!

The alumni set for the Golden Season is out now.

Click here to print out the full sheet.

 

A look back at the 2000s

Video: Daniel Briere on The Instigators

Video: Sabres Memories: Scary Good Goal Call

Video: Inside the Numbers: 2006's 7-6 win vs. Ottawa

View More