Gameday: Panthers - Sabres
With not much more to play for other than pride, the Florida Panthers head to Buffalo to take on the Sabres, Friday night.
Florida, who are on a three game losing steak are just two losses away from officially missing the playoffs. They hope to play spoiler against the Sabres who are just three points up on the Carolina Hurricanes for 8th spot in the East.
This will be the final meeting between the two clubs for the season. Florida currently leafs the series with a 2-0-1 record. Florida won a pair of games prior to the Christmas break, while Buffalo won a game back on February 10th, 3-2 in overtime.
Florida has not been able to find the score sheet in more than 131 minutes, as they lost 1-0 to the New York Rangers on Tuesday, then on Wednesday they deoped a 4-0 decision to the Chicago Blackhawks.
As for the Sabres, they hope to do they best the can with games on back-to-back niges. as they cling to the final playoff position in the East, with Carolina and Toronto hot in pursuit.
Ryan Miller earned a shutout Tuesday night, as Nathan Gerbe scored a goal and added an empty net for the victory.
The Panthers are likely to be without their top point producer, Stephen Weiss for the second straight game, as he missed Wednesday's game with a leg injury and is questionable for tonight's contest.
Florida has lost four straight on the road and are off to a 0-2-0 record on their current five-game trip. They are 14-20-2 this season as the visitor.
If the Panthers miss the playoffs again this year, it will be their 10th straight season without making it to the postseason, the longest playoff drought in the League.
*Note: Scott Clemmensen went down to injury before morning skate in New York. Marty Reasoner's brother, Adam, practised with the team. The former Boston College goalie works in New York's Financial District, and was at the rink 30 minutes after getting the call from his brother. Adam will not dress for the game as Florida has called up Tyler Plante from the Rochester Americans.
Florida Panthers: (29-35-10, 68 PTS) (14-20-2 Away)
Buffalo Sabres: (36-26-9, 81 PTS) (16-16-4 Home)
Power Play: FLA (13.5%, 229th NHL) - BUF (18.5%, 12th NHL)
Penalty Kill: FLA (85.7%, 5th NHL) - BUF (82.6%, 15th NHL)
GF/GA: FLA (178GF, 27th NHL / 198GA, 13th NHL) - BUF (211GF, 9th NHL / 207GA, 18th NHL)
Florida Panthers: Mark Cullen (Achilles Surgery), Rostislav Olesz (Knee), Stephen Weiss (Leg), Scott Clemmmensen (Knee)
Buffalo Sabres: Derek Boogaard (Shoulder), Alex Frolov (Right Knee), Chris Drury (Left Knee), Martin Biron (Collarbone)