The Buffalo Sabres are hoping the comforts of home help them end their winless streak, although they have won only two of their first seven contests at KeyBank Center. The Sabres attempt to halt their four-game skid (0-2-2) when they begin a four-game homestand Saturday against the Carolina Hurricanes.
Buffalo has been held to one goal in three of the four defeats - including Friday’s 3-1 setback at Detroit, which was its Eastern Conference high-tying 10th regulation loss of the season. Carolina is coming off a 6-4 road loss to the New York Islanders on Thursday, which put an end to its five-game point streak (3-0-2). Sebastian Aho has collected five points in his last two games after recording a goal and an assist versus the Islanders. The Hurricanes have been scoring at a nice clip of late, registering three or more goals in each of their last five contests and a total of 18 in that span.
TV: 7 p.m. ET, FSN Carolinas, MSG (Buffalo)
ABOUT THE HURRICANES (7-6-4): Linemates Teuvo Teravainen and Jordan Staal each recorded two assists against New York to remain tied for the team scoring lead of 15 points. The 23-year-old Teravainen, who has collected six points in his last two games and eight in his last four, reached 101 for his career with Thursday’s effort. Jeff Skinner tops the club with nine goals as he looks to reach double digits for the eighth time in as many seasons in the NHL.
ABOUT THE SABRES (5-10-4): Kyle Criscuolo was recalled from Rochester of the American Hockey League on Thursday and made his NHL debut a night later, registering one shot while going 3-2 on faceoffs in 6 minutes, 56 seconds of ice time against the Red Wings. The 25-year-old native of New Jersey has registered five goals and six assists in 14 games with the Americans this season. Evander Kane was kept off the scoresheet Friday, ending a four-game point streak during which he notched three goals and two assists to raise his team-leading total to 18 points.
1. Sabres F Sam Reinhart is two points shy of 100 for his career.
2. Buffalo D Casey Nelson also was recalled from Rochester on Thursday but was a healthy scratch against Detroit.
3. Carolina C Marcus Kruger, who has recorded just one assist over 16 games in his first season with the club, is day-to-day with an illness that kept him out of Thursday’s loss.
PREDICTION: Sabres 3, Hurricanes 2