Buffalo Sabres at Tampa Bay Lightning Preview

(Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images)
(Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images) /

The Tampa Bay Lightning (36-17-3) remain at home tonight as they welcome their Atlantic-division rival, the Buffalo Sabres (28-23-4) to Tampa. FanDuel currently has the Lightning as a hefty -230 favorite on the money line with an over/under of 6.5.

The Bolts are coming off of a massive 6-1 victory on Tuesday night over the struggling Anaheim Ducks. A much-needed win after returning home from a 2-1-1 road trip, Tampa Bay overwhelmed Anaheim all night with constant shots on net. Rookie defenseman Nick Perbix dished out three assists in the game, and Brayden Point’s Power Play goal in the third period earned him his 200th goal of his career. A late Ducks goal got through Vasilevskiy to spoil a shutout effort, but nonetheless the Bolts came up with the big win.

Buffalo is only 2-4 in their six games played so far in February, with their latest loss coming from Toronto by a score of 6-3 two nights ago. Goalie Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen was pulled after allowing four goals in the first period as the Sabres failed to catch up for the remainder of the game. Buffalo still finds themselves in the midst of a heated wild card race heading down the stretch. They currently sit in sixth place, but each team 1-6 only sits within a point or two of each other, making each game extremely crucial. The Lightning will likely see a very spirited effort by the Sabres tonight, especially given Buffalo’s record on the road versus at home. They are 17-8-2 away from home and only 11-15-2 in Buffalo.

In both previous meetings back in November, Tampa Bay prevailed both times to hold a 2-0 record over Buffalo so far this season. The first game saw the Lightning run away with a 5-3 victory at home in which Nick Perbix scored his first NHL goal. The second game on the 28th was even closer with the Bolts winning 6-5 in overtime in Buffalo. Steven Stamkos netted the game winner that night to make it two goals in the game for the Captain. A third game was scheduled to be played on December 23rd in Buffalo as well, but severe weather postponed the matchup to March fourth.

INJURIES: No injuries for Tampa Bay.

Sabres G Ben Bishop remains on IR. D Kale Clague is considered day-to-day with a lower-body injury.

Odds (Courtesy of FanDuel): TBL -230 ML/BUF +188 ML, O 6.5 -132/U 6.5 +108

Where to watch: Bally Sports Sun, NHL Power Play, ESPN+

Where to listen: Lightning Radio 24/7, 102.5 MHz-FM

Amalie Arena, Tampa, FL

February 23, 2023, 7:00 p.m. ET