banner

NHL

more stats

NHL Preview from The Sports Network



Saturday, March 29th (All times Eastern)

Tampa Bay Lightning (40-24-9) at Buffalo Sabres (20-45-8), 7 p.m.

(SportsNetwork.com) - The Tampa Bay Lightning have found a way to pick up points down the stretch so far and the club will aim for its seventh win in nine tries when it visits the last-place Buffalo Sabres on Saturday.

In addition to winning six of their last eight games, the Lightning have earned at least a point in 10 consecutive outings (6-0-4).

The point streak has Tampa Bay two points behind Montreal for second place in the Atlantic Division and nine points in front of fourth-place Toronto. The top three teams in each division earn automatic bids to the playoffs.

Tampa had lost two in a row before returning to the win column with Thursday's 3-2 shootout win over the visiting New York Islanders. The shootout battle lasted 13 rounds, but the Lightning finally won the decisive phase on a score from Sami Salo.

Four players from each team had scored in the first 12 rounds, and Salo gave Tampa the advantage when he lifted a backhander past Evgeni Nabokov. Ben Bishop then preserved the win as he stopped Johan Sundstrom's offering.

"They're fun, especially in front of the home fans to get a win like that," said Bishop. "They made a couple good shots, but our guys did a good job of scoring goals tonight."

Ryan Callahan scored both goals while Bishop turned away 25 shots for the Lightning.

Callahan has four goals and four assists in his first 11 games with Tampa. He was acquired at the trade deadline in the deal that sent Martin St. Louis to the New York Rangers.

Tampa has gone past regulation in each of its last three games and the club has seen four straight and five of its past six tests get decided by one goal.

"First and foremost, we got two points and that's what we needed out of this game. They're not all a Picasso, but we have to be better," warned Tampa Bay head coach Jon Cooper.

The Bolts are 19-16-3 as the away team this season and are playing the first of two straight on the road tonight. After visiting Detroit on Sunday, the Lightning will play six in a row on home ice before closing their regular- season schedule in Washington on April 13.

Buffalo is last in the NHL with 48 points and enters Saturday's game having lost three straight and 10 of its last 11 games. The Sabres have managed only a total of three goals during their current three-game slide and were slammed 6-1 in Thursday's road test in Nashville.

The Sabres, who went 1-4-0 on their recent five-game road trip, trailed 4-0 after the first period of Thursday's game. Colton Sissons beat Sabres goalie Matt Hackett on a rebound to open the scoring at 6:26. Colin Wilson and Calle Jarnkrok scored nine seconds apart before Shea Weber added a goal during a 5-on-3 power play with 43 seconds remaining in the frame.

"Guys came out, and they didn't come out to play that first period," Buffalo head coach Ted Nolan said.

Nathan Lieuwen replaced Hackett, who faced 15 shots, at the start of the second period. Buffalo's Rasmus Ristolainen scored on a blast from the top of the right circle to register the Sabres' only goal at 2:06 of the second period.

Buffalo is beginning a two-game homestand tonight and will try to halt a three-game slide at First Niagara Center. The Sabres are 12-20-5 as the home club this season.

The Sabres lost the first two meetings with Tampa Bay this season before notching a 3-1 win in Tampa on March 6.

03/29 10:28:17 ET

Other Stories

Scoreboard
Local
Final
CREI 65
NCCU 45
 
Final
NCSU 68
SFLA 65
Final
MIA 94
CHA 93
 
Final
MIA 94
CHA 93
 
Final
MEM 107
LAC 91
 
Final
BOS 88
POR 94
 
3rd
OKC 47
GSW 52
 
9:30pm Tonight
LAL
DEN
Final
GMAS 60
COC 61
Final
FSU 69
UMASS 75
Final
SHSU 53
WOFF 64
Final
UNCG 67
YOUNG 76
Final
CMICH 75
ARKPB 43
 
Final
ILLCH 60
SILL 67
Final
MORE 46
AMER 51
Final
CORN 59
DREX 61
Final
CCST 60
COOK 65
Final
ARKLR 94
CSNO 88
Final
LEH 44
CLMB 54
 
Final
USB 89
MERMAR 54
 
Final
NMU 51
TEXAM 64
Final
STLU 56
TAMCC 62
 
Final
FAIR 80
SD 72
Final
EMICH 79
LONG 48
 
Final
ND 74
PROV 75
Final
RAD 88
CATAWBA 52
 
Final
DEN 80
COPST 54
 
Final
UAB 58
JST 50
 
Final
WICHS 105
NWM 57
Final
OKLA 90
NWST 68
Final
KSU 59
YALE 66
Final
CREI 65
NCCU 45
 
Final
NCSU 68
SFLA 65
Final
UCR 102
STKAT 49
 
Final
PSU 63
USC 61
 
Final
HC 101
NICHOLSCOL 70
 
Final
BC 53
DAY 65
Final
MON 75
TOWS 79
Final
HOF 93
WAGN 71
 
Final
CIN 54
EILL 49
Final
UGA 74
FATL 61
Final
BRAD 58
NCAT 50
 
Final
LATU 76
PBY 48
 
Final
RUTG 76
Terriers 73
 
Final
SAMF 64
UMKC 55
 
Final
NAVY 70
BING 68
 
Final
SHU 85
GWEBB 67
 
Final
UNT 58
IONA 78
 
Final
KENT 86
MNTST 28
 
Final
FORD 57
MLOWELL 64
 
Final
UCF 76
USCU 69
 
2nd
SCAR 60
AKR 63
 
2nd
WVU 50
UCONN 40
 
2nd
CALST 53
DEL 38
 
2nd
HOW 59
HOOD 25
 
2nd
OSU 84
SHU 36
 
2nd
VANDY 56
TENST 31
 
1st
NE 29
MAN 15
 
1st
COLST 25
MERC 18
 
1st
MISS 19
NARZ 17
 
1st
WASH 16
PAC 16
 
1st
LMU 20
SDCHR 10
 
9:00pm Tonight
CHAR
MIAMI
9:00pm Tonight
ILLST
ODU
9:00pm Tonight
GAELS
UCI
10:00pm Tonight
UCLA
LBSU
10:30pm Tonight
SEAT
MONT
 
Final
WIN 2
STL 4
2nd
NYR 2
MON 0
 
1st
ANA 0
ARI 0
 
9:30pm Tonight
VAN
CHI
Final
HOU 13
CIN 22
Final
ATL 24
CLE 26
Final
NEP 34
DET 9
Final
MIN 21
GBP 24
Final
IND 23
JAC 3
Final
CHI 21
TAM 13
Final
PHI 43
TEN 24
Final
SEA 19
ARI 3
Final
SDC 27
STL 24
Final
DEN 39
MIA 36
Final
SFX 17
WAS 13
8:30pm Tonight
NYG
DAL