Leading scorers: Thomas Vanek (19G, 5A, 24pts), Jason Pominville (8G, 10A, 18 pts)
Thomas Vanek is a goal-scoring machine. Tied with Mike Richards for first in the league with 19 goals, Vanek and the Sabres come into Pitt tonight for the third meeting of the season. If anything get used to it - we're going to see them one more time before the month is over. Why did the NHL schedule all four games in the span of two months? Because that's what they do.
You may recall the last outing in Buffalo where the Sabres routed a two-goal third period to turn the tides of a 3-2 Penguins lead into a 4-3 Buffalo win. D.O. from Die By the Blade assured us yesterday that the Sabres have not exactly been on a winning streak since then. In fact, the media and head coach Lindy Ruff are calling out his goaltender Ryan Miller for not giving 100%. Does this bother anyone else? After all, you may remember the effect such coaching tactics had on the Penguins last season. MT called out Ryan Whitney and he responded the next game with two goals and an assist. MT scratched Pascal Dupuis last week, posting a goal in his first game back. I'm concerned.
Perhaps this won't be an issue though. The Pens are playing in front of the home crowd, the power play is showing some signs of promise and the team is coming off a rough loss in Ottawa Saturday evening. Put all those things together and you have a team fired up and hungry for a win. Besides, this is set to be another rough week for the Pens in terms of games - three in four days. What's worse is they're all division rivals (Devils, Islanders, Flyers). Time to step on the gas.