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Sharpen Up: April 5, 2017

by Chris Ryndak @ChrisRyndak /

It's the final home game of the season and we have a lot planned for you tonight. The Sabres and Canadiens will square off for the fourth and final time this season. 

If you're coming to KeyBank Center, there's a lot going on for Fan Appreciation Night. If you're watching from home, the pregame show kicks off at 7 p.m.

Here's what you need to know.

The players yesterday addressed their disappointment in how this season has turned out and their own appreciation for the fanbase. 

From yesterday's Ice Level Practice Report:

Buffalo's goal on Wednesday night, which will be Fan Appreciation Night at KeyBank Center, is to not let a performance like the one against Toronto be the last thing their fans see from them this season. The game against the Montreal Canadiens will conclude their home schedule. 

Video: LEHNER: After Practice

"As far as I know, it's a pretty full building every time we're here," Robin Lehner said. "They're very supportive fans. They deserve better. They deserve better than what they've got. We can't give up, we can't lie down and give up. You've got to keep working. You've got to keep going towards the goal and get better as a team. It's what this town and this city deserves."

Video: EICHEL: After Practice

"I've got nothing but great things to say about these fans," Jack Eichel said. "They're nothing but great to us, nothing but great to me. My family, all my friends, whenever they're in town they treat them great. It's been a mediocre two years and for them to continue to support us and be behind us, selling games out … I'm sure that if we were in other cities it wouldn't be the same case so you've got to appreciate that as a player."

Video: BYLSMA: After Practice

Tonight's matchup

Join us for the Tops Game Night pregame show starting at 7 p.m. on MSG. RJ and Rayzor have the call just after 7:30 p.m. 

Buffalo is 52-for-60 (86.7%) on the penalty kill in its last 23 games.

The Sabres ranked first in the league with a 24.8% success rate on the power play entering play Tuesday.

Buffalo has not finished a season ranked in the top five in power-play percentage since the 2005-06 season (third, 21.2%) and the team has led the league only once (1991-92, 22.5%)

The team's current power-play percentage would rank as the third-best conversion rate in franchise history and the best since the team's 25.4% mark in 1975-76. It would be the 13th-best season by any team since the league began publishing the stat in 1987-88.

Buffalo is 25-15-6 all-time in the final home game of the season.

Evander Kane (2+4) and Cody Franson (1+5) each have six points in their last six games against Montreal.

Ryan O'Reilly has 13 points (4+9) in 14 career games against the Canadiens.

What to expect tonight for Fan Appreciation Night presented by ADPRO Sports

  • Guaranteed Sabres Foundation 50-50 raffle pot of at least $50,000
  • Jersey Off My Back giveaway to select season ticket holders after the game
  • My One Buffalo auction that will allow fans at the game to bid on the chance to go home with Sam Reinhart's jersey

Tweet from @BuffaloSabres: You could win Sam Reinhart's jersey off his back at Fan Appreciation Night by @ADPROSports.Here's how.

  • One Buffalo sunglasses to the first 10,000 fans, courtesy of KeyBank

Tweet from @BuffaloSabres: On Wednesday, be one of the first 10,000 fans through the doors to receive these One Buffalo sunglasses, courtesy of @keybank!

  • Delta Air Lines will be hosting an on-ice promotion giving one fan the chance to win two round-trip tickets anywhere Delta flies in the U.S. 48
  • Fans registered for My One Buffalo will also be able to register for a raffle at the Buff-A-Nerd table located on the 100-level concourse
  • An entire section will win free pizza courtesy of La Nova Pizzeria
  • New Era Cap will give away 32 caps
  • Additional prizes for Lucky Row Giveaways
  • Fan-selected Moe's Hot Players, presented by Moe's Southwest Grill
  • Special ticket offers will be available for fans coming to the game:
    • Family packs with four tickets, four sodas, four hot dogs and four popcorns are available for $199.
    • Hat packs featuring two 300 Level II tickets and a Sabres New Era cap can be purchased for $99.
  • Ceremonial faceoff featuring the winner of the 7th Man Award, presented by BlueCross BlueShield of Western New York
  • Winners of this season's player awards will also be announced throughout the game, including Sabres Foundation Man of the Year presented by Roswell Park Cancer Institute, Unsung Hero presented by Labatt, Rookie of the Year presented by Niagara Fallsview Casino Resort and Most Valuable Player presented by KeyBank
  • Hot dogs, soft pretzels, popcorn cups and Sabres souvenir cups with soda will be available for just $2.50 each 
  • The Sabres Store will also be giving all fans 40 percent off their entire purchase during each of the team's home games in April

And everyone will have the chance to win some prizes as part of Fan Appreciation Goes Digital during our final two games this weekend. Download the My One Buffalo app and tune in to MSG. Click here for full details..


On tap today

Stay tuned for full pregame coverage from the optional Morning Skate. Dan Bylsma will address the media with any lineup news and notes. Kyle Okposo missed practice again yesterday due to an illness he's dealing with for about a week now. 

Then check back after the game for full postgame coverage here on 

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