With how bad the Arizona Coyotes were, they were attracting national attention for their ineptness. However, since they have won a few games recently, Buffalo is now being discovered.
As of Thanksgiving, the Sabres were the worst bet against NHL odds at -12.6 units. Similar, to Arizona, Buffalo has few appreciable skills. The Sabres are 30th in scoring, 30th in goals allowed and you guess it, 30th in power play percentage. The only positive aspect is they are 12th in killing penalties. This seems rather trivial when you are outscored by a league-worst 1.2 goals a game.
In watching various parts of Buffalo games, it’s almost like the players are purposely not listening to new head coach Phil Housley. As an assistant elsewhere, Housley was with teams that understood the value of puck possession and worked to play that style and undoubtedly he is working with present roster to follow same procedure and once the games start, the players are doing what they prefer, or so it appears.
That is why it was a smart move to send arguably their best player Jack Eichel, from the top line to the third line. Maybe Buffalo players are just used to losing after so many years and they figure is better to have their own wants to come first. Housley needs to change this culture right way and demoting Eichel sends a strong message.
Nevertheless, for NHL picks, playing on the Sabres is throwing money in the street until this team decides that playing together matters.