The Calgary Flames get back on their horse heading to Buffalo after they were in Detroit last night. They put forth a trying effort and were able to edge the Red Wings out 3-2. It’s a bad loss for the Wings who let that one get away from them. Those are the kind of games that the Red Wings have to win, they can’t be losing to the Flames at home. Calgary will look to get a good head of steam going with their second win in a row on the road. The Sabres will also be looking for their second straight win, after snapping a five-game losing streak.
Of all teams they could have beaten, it came against the Pittsburgh Penguins. The Pens took the Sabres lightly and that’s what happens when you take another team like that. The Flames can’t be get too confident after beating the Red Wings last night. From a confidence standpoint, it’s easy to feel too good about yourself. Beating a team with as much success as the Red Wings have had in the last decade, it can be a moment to pump your chest.
However, the Flames have no time to be pumping their chests, they have a lot of work to do. Calgary comes into Buffalo with a record of 8-11-1, so they’re certainly capable of turning this season into an appearance in the playoffs, but like I said there’s a lot of work to do. For them to make that a reality, I can say that they need Brian Elliott to play lights out. They signed Elliott, the former Blues’ talent, in an effort to help their defence out which was near the back of the NHL last season. Elliott needs some help, though, so it’s all going to have to come together for the Flames this year. We will see what happens tonight against the Sabres, as they continue their tour out east.
The Sabres have been short-handed this season on the talent level and it’s hindered them out of the gates. Two of their most dynamic playmakers, Jack Eichel and Ryan O’Reilly are both sitting on the shelf. There are two guys who were expected to lead the Sabres into promising things this season, but without them the offence has been struggling to facilitate any goals. Through their last seven games, they’ve averaged just 1 goal per game. They just got by the Pens, in a 2-1 win their last game out, needing extra time to get to their second goal. The Sabres haven’t scored more than 2 goals in any of their last ten games. This leaves them dead last in the NHL, 30th, scoring just 1.78 goals per game.
They are waiting patiently until Eichel and O’Reilly make their returns, but until then, the Sabres need to get wins from their defence. Buffalo are 11th in the NHL, allowing 2.44 goals per game so it’s a pretty good effort from them. For the Flames’ defence and Elliott, this has to be one of those stat-filler games. Elliott hasn’t gotten off to the best of starts, but here’s an opportunity against the worst offence in the league to get his save percentage in order.
The Flames are 25th in scoring this season thus far, so it’s not like the goals have been helping him out, but he needs to be better regardless. The Flames have scored more than 2 goals only once in their last ten games. Note that they’ve scored an average of only 1.5 goals in their last ten games. The Sabres will sit back on the puck tonight, just like they’ve been doing all season without Eichel and O’Reilly in the lineup. The UNDER looks like some good value in this spot tonight.
PICK: UNDER 5 GOALS (+105)