Two nights after a tough 5-4 loss in Philadelphia, the Buffalo Sabres will be taking the ice at the HSBC Arena, looking to take a 2-1 series lead in the Eastern Conference Quarterfinals against the Philadelphia Flyers.
Here are four keys to victory for tonight's game in Buffalo:
- The Sabres must play better defensive hockey.
Sabres' goaltender Ryan Miller has faced 69 shots in two games, compared to the Flyers' goaltenders, Sergei Bobrovsky and Brian Boucher, who have faced a combined 53 shots in two games.
Throughout most of the first two matchups between the aforementioned teams, the Flyers have often dominated the Sabres zone. This has lead to some bad decision making, whether it be a turnover or a penalty. The issue here is that the bad decision making not only wears down the Sabres defenders but it also wears down Ryan Miller.
- Buffalo must cut down on the penalties.
In two games, the Sabres have taken 19 penalties. If they continue to put themselves in the penalty box that often in Game 3, they will definitely be fighting an uphill battle. The reason for that is simple. Thomas Vanek, who leads the Sabres with two goals in this series, played only 13:28 in the first game and 16:48 in the second game.
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