Senators vs. Sabres
Both teams are expecting to finish up the 2013 regular season with very different results but nonetheless, the two teams will meet on Friday night in a matchup of division rivals.
Record: 111-120 (-106)
The Ottawa Senators can win because…
The Sabres are a wreck right now. Those making their NHL picks know that Buffalo is ready to pack it in. They’ve been bad all season and now they are just playing out the string. Worse yet, they are doing it without the foundations of their team like Jason Pominville, Robyn Regehr and Jordan Leopold – all of whom they just traded away.
Ottawa is in a different mood as they are a team that’s heading towards the playoffs and got a boost at the deadline. Cory Conacher is expected to make his debut on Friday and he be a catalyst for the Sens. Also, goaltender Craig Anderson is finally healthy and could make the start on Friday.
Ottawa has won three straight in this series. At a pick, they are worth a look on the NHL odds.
The Buffalo Sabres can win because…
They showed they can still win with the team they have. Even with all of the adversity facing them at the deadline, they still managed to go into Pittsburgh on Tuesday night and end the Penguins 15-game winning streak. The Sabres were dominant in the 4-1 win and they’ll be riding the wave of that momentum into Friday’s contest.
Ottawa has lost two straight overall and is just 6-11 on the road this season. They are ripe for the picking if Buffalo plays like they did on Tuesday.
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Outlook & Pick
The Sens are the play in this spot. They are the better team with more on the line. Buffalo upset Pittsburgh but then watched their captain get shipped off at the trade deadline. Now they are left to pick up the pieces and find something to play for in the final couple weeks of the season.
Playing at home isn’t necessarily an advantage for the Sabres right now as their fans aren’t happy given what’s transpired. I’ll take a shot with Ottawa on Friday night.