The NHL is set up with a great slate of action throughout March 22. Ten games are up on the board throughout Monday night. One of these games will be between the Buffalo Sabres and the New York Rangers. These two teams have struggled a bit throughout this season, but will look for a big win in this one. This game will drop the puck at around 7:00 PM Eastern time.
The Sabres have earned a record of 6-19-4 to this point in the season, which has them sitting in last place of the East Division. Buffalo has struggled as of late, losing thirteen games in a row. The Sabres have fallen far out of the playoff picture, but will look to finally get back in the win column in this one. Buffalo will need to play a much more complete game in this one.
New York has put up a record of 13-13-4 so far this season, which has them in sixth place of the East Division. The Rangers are coming off a win and have won three of their last five. New York is six points out of the playoff picture and will look to close the gap with a win in this one. The Rangers will look to build off their last win on Monday night.
These two teams have struggled to this point in the season, but I think that it will be a good game on Monday night. The Rangers are still in the race for a playoff spot, while Buffalo’s losing streak has made this almost impossible to get back in the race. The Sabres will look to play a bit of spoiler though as they try to earn a much needed win. I expect a good game as these two teams kick off the night of action.
The Sabres and the Rangers have met up three times so far this season. Buffalo hosted the first game on January 26. Chris Kreider and K’Andre Miller both scored for New York, but it was not enough. Dylan Cozens, Jack Eichel and Tobias Rieder each scored for the Sabres. Linus Ullmark stopped 28 of the 30 shots he faced as Buffalo earned a 3-2 win.
The second game of the season series stayed in Buffalo on January 28. Sam Reinhart had a goal and an assist for the Sabres, but this one was not enough. Artemi Panarin had a goal and an assist as well, while Alexis Lafreniere scored the game winner in overtime. Igor Shesterkin finished with 23 saves on 25 shots as the Rangers bounced back with a 3-2 win of their own.
New York hosted the third and most recent game of the season series on March 2. Sam Reinhart and Tobias Rieder scored for the Sabres, but Buffalo could not grab the win. Pavel Buchnevich had a goal and an assist, while Adam Fox had two assists. Igor Shesterkin earned 22 saves on 24 shots to help propel the Rangers to a 3-2 win at home.
These two teams have already met up three times this season, with New York earning wins in two of the three games. Buffalo has kept it close with the Rangers throughout this season and will look to break through in this one. The Sabres will look to have a quick start like they had in the first game of the season series as they try to repeat that success.
Buffalo’s power play has been solid throughout this season. The Sabres have capitalized on 19 of their 74 power play chances, which is a 25.7 percent success rate. Buffalo’s penalty kill has struggled a bit though. The Sabres have given up 15 power play goals on 69 penalties against, which is a 78.3 percent penalty kill.
The Rangers have struggled to get their power play going throughout this season. New York has scored on 16 of their 109 power play opportunities, which is a 14.7 percent power play. The Rangers have been strong on the penalty kill this season. New York has killed off 84 of their opponents 97 power play attempts, which is an 86.6 percent kill rate.
These two teams match up really well on special teams in this one. The Sabres power play has a tough matchup against New York’s penalty kill. The Rangers could get their power play going though against Buffalo’s penalty kill. If either of these teams can get going on special teams, it could be enough to grab a win on Monday night.
Carter Hutton will likely get the start between the pipes for the Sabres on Monday night. Hutton has earned a record of 1-10-1 throughout his starts this season. He has put up a .885 save percentage and a GAA of 3.48. Hutton’s last start was against the Boston Bruins, where he stopped 33 of 37 shots in the losing effort.
I expect Igor Shesterkin to get the nod in the crease for New York in this one. Shesterkin has started in 13 games this season, going 6-7-1 throughout those games. He has posted a save percentage of .921 and a 2.31 GAA in his games played. Shesterkin finished with 32 saves on 33 shots in his last start against the New Jersey Devils.
The Rangers have the edge in net in this one with Shesterkin getting the nod. Shesterkin has won back to back starts, while Hutton has lost his last ten starts. The Sabres will need Hutton to step up in this one if they want a chance to grab the win. Shesterkin has the better record and numbers this season and will look to strengthen them with a win in this one.
The Sabres are entering this one as they continue to spiral down the standings. Buffalo has disappointed throughout this season, but will look to finally end that streak in this one. I believe that the Sabres could finally end this losing streak against New York. Buffalo has kept is close with the Rangers in their previous meetings and if they can put together a more complete game, it could give them the win.
BetOnline has New York listed as a -201 against the money line in this one. This implies that the Rangers will win this game around 66.8 percent of the time. This line seems a little big for me since New York has been around .500 all season. Buffalo has had four days off to clear their heads and I think they will be able to come out quicker in this one.