Pittsburgh Penguins (24-10-1) @ Buffalo Sabres (21-10-2)
Just got word from a source that Max Talbot will return to the lineup tonight. Talbot has been a healthy scratch in the lineup for the past two games.
Talbot will replace Eric Godard in the lineup and skate on the 4th line with Michael Rupp and Craig Adams.
Penguins @ Sabres Preview
Pittsburgh, New Jersey and Washington have been the toast of the Eastern Conference to this point in the season. Buffalo can crash the party tonight with a win over Pittsburgh.
Philadelphia was supposed to present a pair of statement games to the Penguins this week. The intensity fit the rivalry, but the Flyers are not playing like a team that will be a threat to the Penguins in the playoffs. Buffalo has the look of being a team that could cause the Penguins and others problems in the Eastern Conference.
First in the Northeast with 44 points, the Sabres are riding the back of goaltender Ryan Miller. Miller has 20 wins, a 1.89 GAA and .937 SV%, numbers that are 2nd, 1st and 1st in the league, respectively. Miller is a lock for the starting job on the American Olympic team.
However, Penguins goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury is not expected get a chance to measure himself against one of the league’s best tonight as backup goaltender Patrick Lalime is expect to start for the Sabres. Fleury is 9-1-1 his last 11 outings.
Buffalo is 7-3 their last 10 games, and coming off a 5-2 win over Toronto last night. Pittsburgh is even hotter, 7-2-1 their last 10 and riding a 4-game win streak.
The Buffalo Sabres have struggled to score goals this season as Thomas Vanek leads the team with only 10 goals, but has a knack of scoring against the Penguinss. Buffalo plays a puck possession game in the offensive zone.
Establishing a good forecheck and keeping the puck in Buffalo’s territory will be a key for Pittsburgh.