Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Caps/Sabres Preview

Washington Capitals at Buffalo Sabres
Wednesday, March 5th, 2008, 7:30 PM
HSBC Arena in Buffalo, New York

Last Meeting: 12/14/07, Caps lose 5-3

About the Opponent

Buffalo Sabres, 32-26-9, 73 points, 4th in the Northeast Division, 9th in the Eastern Conference.

Team Leaders
Goals: Thomas Vanek (27)
Assists: Jason Pominville (40)
Points: Jason Pominville (62)
Plus/Minus: Jason Pominville (12)
Penalty Minutes: Andrew Peters (85)
Fights: Andrew Peters (11)

Random Sabres Fact
In 1996, before a game between the Sabres and the Boston Bruins, the scoreboard at HSBC Arena fell to the ice while it was being moved. There were no players on the ice at the time and no one was hurt.

Random Sabres Statistic
Sabres winger Thomas Vanek had a +47 plus/minus ratings last season. This season his is even (+0).

Keys to the Game

Keep the energy level high. The Capitals always play a much better game when they keep the energy level up and the Sabres played in Philadelphia last night.

Get out in front early. The Capitals are likely to be flying high coming off their 10-2 victory over Boston and if the Sabres can come out and get a quick goal or two it may throw things awry on the opposition's bench.

Players to Watch

Olaf Kolzig - Kolzig's been scapegoated plenty this season when he hasn't deserved it, but the last two times these teams met he cost the Capitals at least one point, plain and simple. With Huet playing well, you'd have to figure Kolzig will run out chances (eventually...) if he doesn't start showing something in net.

Thomas Vanek - the object of Kevin Lowe's offseason affection has started playing like he's worth $10 million, putting up 20 points (13+7) in 15 games in February.

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