It’s hard to believe, but the Sabres are on pace for the worst home record in franchise history. Entering tonight’s game against Montreal, they’re 9-16-3 at First Niagara Center, which translates to 31 points for the season.
They had 33 points at home in each of the last two seasons, when they finished dead last in the NHL and were tanking for the top pick in the draft. They’re actually trying to win this year, which makes their wretched home record even more distressing.
They have two terrific rookies in Jack Eichel and Sam Reinhart, two skilled and high-priced forwards in Evander Kane and Ryan O’Reilly, a top young defenseman in Rasmus Ristolainen. So how come they’re on pace for the league’s worst home record since the 2006-07 Flyers?
Maybe they squeeze the sticks too hard at home to please those deluded folks who expected them to be a playoff contender. Or it could be the subdued, uninspiring atmosphere inside the FNC.
I guess it shows that going from the NHL’s worst team to a playoff team is a lot harder than fans wanted to believe. It’s hard to make a playoff push when you’re a pushover at home.