Buffalo vs. Canadiens
Bell Centre-March 22/2011-7:30pm
Season Records – Buffalo 72GP (35-28-9) 79 pts. 8th in Eastern Conference; 3rd in Northeast division. Canadiens – 73GP (40-26-7) 87 pts. Sixth in Eastern Conference; second in Northeast Division.
The Season Series – Sixth and final regular season meeting. Canadiens (3-0-2). Oct. 15 @Buffalo- Canadiens-2 Buffalo-1. Canadiens score twice in second (Picard and Gorges) to take 2-0 lead. Roy for Buffalo. Price stops 22 of 23. 40th anniversary of the Sabres first home game. Nov.5 @Buffalo Canadiens-3 Buffalo-2 Pouliot scores back to back goals in second period as Canadiens come from behind. Halpern also scored. Grier and Leopold for Buffalo. Price stops 29 of 31. Plekanec miss game with the flu. Nov.27 @Bell Centre Canadiens-3 Buffalo-1 Brian Gionta with 2 goals. Kostitsyn 1 goal,1 assist. Plekanec 2 assists. Leopold ruined Price shutout bid with 1:13 remaining. Price stopped 35 of 36 shots. Jan. 18 @Buffalo Sabres-2 Canadiens-1 (overtime) Cammalleri suffers separated shoulder in first period. Pacioretty taken to hospital after being struck in the ribs by a James Wisniewski slapshot. Scott Gomez takes a retaliatory highsticking penalty with 43 seconds remaining. The penalty carried over into the overtime and Pominville scored. Desharnais scored the Canadiens goal. Price stops 37 of 39 shots. Feb.15 @Bell Centre Buffalo-3 Canadiens-2 (shootout) – Canadiens blow a 2-0 lead. Pacioretty and Pouliot score. Stafford and Pominville to tie it up. A ten round shootout. In the shootout the Canadiens took a 2-0 lead (Desharnais & Plekanec) Buffalo tied it with their second and third shots (Vanek/Ennis) Pacioretty scored in the 5th round, immediately answered by Gerbe. Subban hit the post in the 7th round. Jochen Hecht scored the game winner in round ten.
Injuries – Buffalo – C-Jochen Hecht (upper body); RW-Patrick Kaleta (knee); G-Patrick Lalime (knee); D-Steve Montador (lower body); C-Derek Roy (IR-quadriceps surgery). Montreal- C-Tomas Plekanec (lower body); C- Jeff Halpern (lower body); LW-Max Pacioretty (IR-concussion/broken neck); LW-Mathieu Darche (IR-groin); D-Jaroslav Spacek (IR-knee surgery); D-Josh Gorges (IR-knee surgery); D-Andrei Markov (IR-knee surgery)
Goaltending – Buffalo – Ryan Miller 60GS (30-21-8) 2.68GAA .913save%. This season vs. Canadiens (1-2-0) 1.99 GAA .934 save%. Canadiens – Carey Price 62GS (34-24-6) 2.38GAA .922save%. This season vs. Buffalo (3-0-2) 1.57GAA .950save%.
Who’s Hot – Buffalo – Tyler Ennis – last 14 games – 7 goals,5 assists. Canadiens – Andrei Kostitsyn – last 13 games – 6goals, 6assists.
Last Ten Games – Buffalo (5-3-2) Canadiens (7-3-0)
Recently – Buffalo – lost 4-3 at home to Nashville Sunday after leading 3-1 with 2:27 left in regulation time. Saturday night they beat Atlanta 8-2 also at home. Canadiens beat Minnesota 8-1 Sunday in St. Paul after losing 6-3 to the Rangers Friday night at Madison Square Garden.
…..The Canadiens have won eight of their last eleven games overall. They are two points behind fifth place Tampa Bay ( the Lightning hold a game in hand) and one point behind Boston for the lead in the Northeast Division (the Bruins have two games in hand).
……The Sabres come into the game with an 8-3-3 record over their last fourteen outings.
…..The Canadiens have played shorthanded more than any other NHL team-293 times. Second is Pittsburgh at 287 then Columbus at 280. Buffalo has played shorthanded 273 times.
…..After 36 games this season, the Sabres were 14-18-4 and there was speculation about head coach Lindy Ruff’s future. In the last 36 games the Sabres are 21-10-5.
……In the battle of special teams the Sabres are even (48PPG For /48 against). The Canadiens are plus-eleven (59/48)
…..Sunday’s blown lead against Nashville was the seventh time the Sabres lost after leading by two goals, tied for most in the NHL.
The Cold Statistics
Goals For/Against – Buffalo – 214/208 plus-6 Canadiens – 200/185 plus-15.
Vs. Eastern Conference – Buffalo (26-23-6) Canadiens (33-18-5) Vs. Northeast Division – Buffalo (14-7-1) Canadiens (13-5-2)
Home/Road – Buffalo on the road (19-12-5) Canadiens at home (22-9-6)
Special Teams – Power Play – Buffalo-ranked 10th 18.9% (48/254) Canadiens –ranked 7th 19.5% (59/274) Penalty Killing – Buffalo-ranked 16th 82.4% (48/273) Canadiens-ranked 10th 83.3%
Team Record When They…….
Score the First Goal – Buffalo – (20-10-3) Canadiens (28-6-5)
Are Scored Upon First – Buffalo (15-18-3) Canadiens (12-20-2)
Lead at End of First Period – Buffalo (18-6-3) Canadiens (22-3-2)
Trail at End of First Period – Buffalo (10-11-4) Canadiens (4-19-1)
Coming Up- Buffalo will play home games vs. Florida and New Jersey Friday and Saturday. The Canadiens travel to Boston Thursday followed by Washington at home Saturday.