Buffalo Sabres vs New York Islanders 3/6/21 Game Preview

Sabres

Hall – Eichel – Cozens

Olofsson – Staal – Reinhart

Rieder – Eakin – Okposo

Skinner – Lazar – Sheahan

Irwin – Ristolainen

Bryson – Montour

Dahlin – Miller

Hutton

Islanders

Lee – Barzal – Eberle 

Beauvillier – Nelson – Bailey

Dal Colle – Pageau – Wahlstrom

Clutterbuck – Cizikas – Martin

Pelech – Pulock 

Leddy – Mayfield

Greene – Dobson

Varlamov

News and Notes

First line Cozens

Dylan Cozens will start this afternoon’s game on the Sabres’ top line with Jack Eichel and Taylor Hall.

Cozens skated on a line with Hall and Eichel at Friday’s practice and Krueger confirmed that’s where the rookie would start when he met with the media on Saturday morning. 

“He quite clearly, very quickly is becoming an important centerpiece of what we want to build on here as we move forward.” said Krueger when asked about Cozens.

“We just want him to keep building on those fundamentals and doing nothing different because he’s playing with Jack Eichel and Taylor Hall.”

Solving Varlamov 

It’s expected that Semyon Varlamov will start in net for the Islanders on Saturday afternoon.  

Varlamov is 2-0-0 against the Sabres this season with a .947 Save% and a 1.5 GAA.

The Russian netminder is coming off a win against New Jersey last Tuesday where he stopped 28 of 29 shots. 

Scoring First 

If there’s one thing the Sabres have learned from their previous four matchups with the Islanders this season it’s that they need to score first.

The Islanders game plan is simple, they get lead and suffocate the game. The Sabres have fallen trap (full pun intended) to this practically each time and last Thursday was no different.

Get the first one today and give yourself a chance.

Krueger Response

Kevyn Adams met with the media on Friday and didn’t mince his words saying the Sabres product has simply not been good enough.

Ralph Krueger had the chance to respond this morning and said he’s strictly focused on the game at hand.

“Anything beyond that right now would be a waste of focus and energy. The team needs me to be a 100 percent present and that’s what I am here, right now.”

Prediction

Hard to take the Sabres in this one. 4-1 Islanders.

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