Calgary Flames vs. Buffalo Sabres Matchup Preview

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Facing each other for the final time this season, the Calgary Flames and the Buffalo Sabres meet at the KeyBank Center in a cross-continent tilt. This one gets going at 7:30 p.m. ET on Wednesday, March 7 and it can be watched live on Sportsnet.

Calgary Flames at Buffalo Sabres Odds

With a moneyline of -135, Calgary enters the matchup as the favorite. The line for Buffalo sits at +115. The Over/Under (O/U), set at 6 goals, initially opened at -125 for the over and +105 for the under. That line’s shifted, however, and it presently sits at -120 over and +100 under.

Calgary is 32-35 straight up (SU) and has lost 9.4 units for moneyline bettors this year. Through 67 regular season matches, 33 of its games have gone under the total, while 32 have gone over and just two have pushed. As the road team this season, the Flames are 18-16 SU.

Calgary has converted on just 17.9 percent of its power play chances this season, a mark that’s ranked 25th in the NHL. Its penalty kill is ranked 15th overall, and the team’s successfully killed off 80.7 percent of all penalties.

The Flames, as a collective unit, have been called for penalties 4.4 times per game overall this season, and 6.8 per game over its last five road outings. The team’s had to defend opponent power plays a whopping 15.6 minutes per game over their last 10 outings.

Sporting a .921 save percentage and 29.0 saves per game, Mike Smith (24-23-6) has been the top option in goal for Calgary this year. If Calgary chooses to rest him, however, they could go with David Rittich (7-9-3), who has a .900 save percentage and 3.11 goals against average this year.

Johnny Gaudreau and Sean Monahan will both spearhead the attack for the visiting Flames. Gaudreau has 74 points via 20 goals and 54 assists, and has recorded multiple points 20 times. Monahan has 29 goals and 29 assists to his credit (and has logged a point in 38 games).

Buffalo is 21-45 straight up (SU) and has lost 14.8 units for moneyline bettors thus far. Through 66 regular season contests, 33 of its games have gone under the total, while 29 have gone over and just four have pushed. It’s 10-22 SU at home this season.

The Sabres have converted on just 17.5 percent of their power play opportunities this season, a figure that places them in the bottom 10 overall among NHL teams. On the other hand, its penalty kill is ranked 23rd overall, and it’s successfully killed off 78.9 percent of all opponent power plays.

Buffalo players have been whistled for penalties 3.6 times per game in total this season, 3.4 per game over their past five contests total, and 3.2 per game over their last five home outings. The team’s had to defend opponent power plays 8.5 minutes per game over their last 10 outings.

Robin Lehner (27.0 saves per game) has been the primary choice in goal for the Sabres. Lehner has 13 wins, 34 losses, and eight overtime losses and has registered a pedestrian 2.97 goals against average and a poor .909 save percentage this season.

Jack Eichel (22 goals, 31 assists) will pace the attack for the home team.

Calgary Flames vs. Buffalo Sabres Free Picks

Free NHL Tip: SU Winner – Flames, O/U – Under

Betting Trends

  • Calgary (2-5 in shootouts this season) has more experience in games decided by shootout. Buffalo fell short in its lone shootout this season.
  • The total has gone under in three of Buffalo’s last five outings.
  • Over Calgary’s last ten games, seven of them have been decided by two or more goals (the team is 2-5 in those games).