After losing the first game of the mini-series 3-2, the New York Rangers hope to even the score with a Buffalo Sabres team that appears to have turned a corner on the season. The Rangers only have one win on the season thus far but the Sabres have won two consecutive games to bring their record to 3-3. The Rangers and the Sabres are hoping that this year can be the breakout year where they finally reach the playoffs.
Rangers offensive woes leave them with one winThe Rangers were expected to be one of the best teams in the East Division with a young roster and plenty of talent. Unfortunately, the talent has not translated to wins as the Rangers have only one win on the season and have issues across their roster. The Rangers have only scored 15 goals this season and have only scored more than 3 goals once this season. Additionally, the Rangers don't have any scorers that have 3 goals or more this season.
Aside from the offensive struggles, the defense has not helped out and the goaltending has its question marks. Aside from Adam Fox, nobody on the defense has more than 10 blocked shots. Meanwhile, Igor Shesterkin struggled in goal, allowing 10 goals in 3 starts but Alexandar Georgiev has been able to fill in nicely and is now the new starter in goal.
Sabres top line lead the wayThe Sabres looked like they were going through another season of mediocrity as they only won 1 of their first 5 games. Since the poor start, the Sabres have won back-to-back games and looked poised to make a run for the East Division. The Sabres goaltending duo, which initially was a question mark, has been one of their strengths with both Linus Ullmark and Carter Hutton splitting time in goal.
The top line has been the primary strength for the Sabres with Victor Olofsson, Taylor Hall, and Jack Eichel all leading the offense. Olofsson leads the Sabres in goals with 3 on the season while Jack Eichel has 7 assists with Talyor Hall also adding 5 assists to the offense.