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Get your game notes: Sabres at Penguins

Jan 27, 2014, 12:46 PM EDT

BUFFALO, NY - FEBRUARY 17: Alexander Sulzer #52 of the Buffalo Sabres and Tanner Glass #10 of the Pittsburgh Penguins reach for the puck on February 17, 2013 at the First Niagara Center in Buffalo, New York. (Photo by Bill Wippert/NHLI via Getty Images) Getty Images

This evening on NBCSN, it’s the Pittsburgh Penguins hosting the Buffalo Sabres starting at 7:30 p.m. ET. Following are some game notes, as compiled by the NHL on NBC research team:

– Pittsburgh, the Eastern Conference leader with 74 points, enters tonight’s game 14-1-0 in their last 15 home games. The Pens’ only home loss in that stretch came in a 5-1 defeat to Florida on Jan. 20. The Penguins have lost 5 times in their last 21 games (16-4-1), with all 5 losses to teams outside of playoff position (at DAL, vs. FLA, at EDM (OT), at NJ, at OTT). Buffalo has a league-low 35 points.

– The Penguins, 21-4-0 at CONSOL Energy Center, match Anaheim for the NHL’s most home wins. Buffalo’s 5 road wins (5-14-3) are the fewest in the league. The Pens have won 6 of the last 9 matchups in Pittsburgh over the Sabres and are 10-4-0 in the last 14 overall meetings.

– Pittsburgh is coming off a 3-0 loss at Dallas on Sat., the third time they’ve been shut out this season. Buffalo won at Columbus, 5-2, on Sat. but is 1-3-2 overall in their last 6 games and have not won consecutive road games played in back-to-back games all season.

Sidney Crosby has registered at least 1 point in 15 consecutive games against the Sabres, the longest active streak for any player against an NHL team. He has 9 G – 15 A during his streak vs. Buffalo.

Player | Opponent | Streak

Sidney Crosby, PIT | BUF | 15

Steven Stamkos, TB | WPG/ATL |  13

Patrick Kane, CHI | EDM | 12

Joe Thornton, SJ | COL | 12

– Crosby (league-leading 72 pts, team-leading 27 goals) & Chris Kunitz (25 goals) have a combined 52 goals, one short of matching the highest scoring tandem in the NHL (ANA – Perry/Getzlaf – 53). Both scored in the Pens previous meeting vs. BUF this season (4-1 PIT home win on Oct. 5). Crosby leads all NHL players with 37 home points (12G-25A) and has 13G-20A in 23 career games vs. Buffalo. Kunitz has 7G-5A in 19 career games vs. the Sabres and 3G-4A in last 7 games against them.

Matt Niskanen (+29 – 1st in NHL) & Kunitz (+25, t-2nd) lead PIT in +/- rating. The Pens have 11 players at +2 or above this season; Buffalo has 4 players at +1 as their highest rated players.

– Tonight, Evgeni Malkin will play in his 500th NHL game. He becomes just the 15th Penguin in team history to reach that milestone. Crosby (522 GP) was the 14th earlier this season. Malkin has points in 6 of his last 7 games vs. the Sabres (4G-7A) & at least 1 point in 11 of his last 12 home games (7G-13A).

– Pittsburgh’s Marc-Andre Fleury leads the league in wins & home wins (28, 18). Buffalo’s Ryan Miller is 7-11-3 all-time against the Penguins, 1 of only 3 teams he has a losing record against, with a .888 save percentage (his lowest against any NHL team).

– The Penguins lead the NHL in both special teams categories (24.4% on PP, 87.3% on PK). The Sabres are 29th on the PP (13.9%) & 12th on PK (82.9%). Pittsburgh has been perfect on the penalty kill against the Sabres in eight straight home games (18-for-18 during span).

– Pittsburgh ranks 4th in the league in goals per game (3.15), while Buffalo averages the fewest (1.82).

  1. penguins87and71 - Jan 27, 2014 at 12:55 PM

    Hopefully the Penguins can show up tonight and play a good game. I would lilt to see Jayson Megna or Brian Gibbons get a chance to play on the 1st line.

    • killerpgh - Jan 27, 2014 at 1:14 PM

      These were the lines in the morning skate today:

      Kunitz-Crosby-Gibbons
      Jokinen-Malkin-Neal
      Glass-Sutter-Megna
      Pyatt-Adams-Engelland
      (Ebbett, Kobasew)

      Orpik-Martin
      Scuderi-Letang
      Maatta-Niskanen
      (Bortuzzo)

  2. thomasvanek - Jan 27, 2014 at 1:00 PM

    Might as well call this Penguins game notes

    • jpelle82 - Jan 27, 2014 at 1:15 PM

      i was looking for the other half of the article or a link or something….pretty odd, these are usually fair posts.

      • killerpgh - Jan 27, 2014 at 1:38 PM

        Well they did mention the Sabres in the title. What more do you want…..

  3. penguins87and71 - Jan 27, 2014 at 1:04 PM

    I wouldn’t say that. The Penguins played two bad teams this past week and they lost both of those games. They were outscored 8-1.

  4. buddysguys - Jan 27, 2014 at 1:30 PM

    must be hard to come up with notes for Buffalo when the whole time you are just working the Pit D deep in your zone. Sabres might stink but they do have some (ok a couple) players worth talking about.

  5. rabidbillsfan - Jan 27, 2014 at 2:58 PM

    Knock the Sabres all you want, but they are playing really hard under Nolan. This team was a total embarrassment to start the season. In the last 2 months or so, I honestly can’t pick more than 2/3 games where I was like “Wow, the Sabres probably shouldn’t have even taken the ice”.

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