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Sharpen Up: November 6, 2017

by Chris Ryndak @ChrisRyndak /

The Sabres are back in town after a two-game road trip against Western Conference opponents last weekend. They defeated the Arizona Coyotes on Thursday, but went down early on Saturday in a 5-1 loss to the Dallas Stars. 

They host Washington tomorrow at KeyBank Center. That game will be on NBCSN at 7 p.m.

Here's what you need to know.


About Saturday night

Video: BUF Recap: Sabres can't make up deficit in 5-1 loss

From a style of play standpoint, the Sabres opened Saturday's game the way they wanted. However, three goals in the first 10:27 chased Robin Lehner from the net and Dallas added a fourth a few minutes later. And that was basically it.

From Lexus Postgame Report by Jourdon, who was on the scene:

The Sabres controlled the play for the first three minutes of the game until a goal for Remi Elie snowballed into a 4-0 deficit by period's end. The Sabres outshot the Stars the rest of the way, but were only able to bury one of their chances in an eventual 5-1 loss.

Video: Housley Postgame Interview at Dallas

"When I evaluate the game, I think we played well," Sabres coach Phil Housley said. "The score tells you differently, and there's probably going to be a lot of people that disagree with me. But I think we got the start we wanted. There were some bad bounces that occurred."

Video: Lehner: Postgame Interview at DAL

Lehner, who was coming off of a performance in Arizona in which he made several big saves to keep the Sabres in the game early, admitted to making a mistake on Remi Elie's opening goal. The rebound that led to Radek Faksa's goal, he said, came after the puck jumped over his stick.

"I have to be better," he said. "It's a game of mistakes, I made a mistake there, and together with a bounce and a good goal there it's 3-0. It's unfortunate."

Chad Johnson made 13 saves on 15 shots in relief. With the Stars on the power play, Tyler Seguin beat Johnson with a one-time shot from the left faceoff circle to extend their lead to 4-0 with 7:09 remaining in the first period.

"I just thought we needed to change the goalie, maybe change the momentum," Housley said. "It's unfortunate. If I asked him if he'd want those three back, he probably would. It's one of those things. He played really well in Arizona, tonight it wasn't the case."

Video: O'Reilly: Postgame Interview at DAL

"You could see right away, we were physical and then [we have] a couple bad bounces," Ryan O'Reilly, who scored Buffalo's lone goal, said. "They happen. You still could make better plays in those situations, but a couple bad bounces took the wind out of our sails. It was tough."

Video: Eichel: Postgame Interview at DAL

"We did a lot of good things," Jack Eichel said. "We had some chances. It just seems like we have those little mental lapses and it always ends up in our net. Playing a team like that, with a lot of skill up front, they come at you in bunches and they're fast. They made us pay."

Injury update

The list of injured Sabres is pretty long and Rasmus Ristolainen's name was added to it before Saturday's game. He did not play due to an upper-body injury. Ristolainen was the league leader in average time on ice per game at 27:09.

When the Sabres return to practice this morning at HarborCenter, we'll hopefully get updates on these players as well:

Evan Rodrigues (hand; injured reserve) 
Zach Bogosian (lower body; injured reserve)
Jacob Josefson (lower body; injured reserve)
Josh Gorges (lower body; injured reserve)
Nathan Beaulieu (upper body; injured reserve)
Justin Bailey (lower body)

On tap today

Stay tuned for practice coverage from HarborCenter. Jourdon and Duffer will have the reports for you later here on

We'll also have Kris Baker's Sabres Prospects Report for you. 

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