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Buffalo Sabres at Arizona Coyotes Preview: Revenge or Sweep?

© Timothy T. Ludwig-USA TODAY Sports

In only a one-week span, the season series between the Arizona Coyotes (14-13-2) and Buffalo Sabres (13-15-2) concludes tonight having already seeing each other on Dec. 11.

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This past Monday, Buffalo controlled the pace throughout a 5-2 win over Arizona as captain Kyle Okposo and left wing Eric Robinson both had a goal and two assists apiece.

The Sabres’ aggressive forecheck and speed created a plethora of problems in the Coyotes’ defensive zone, which resulted in ‘Yotes goaltender Karel Vejmelka having to combat adversity right from the initial whistle.

To his credit, it was Vejmelka’s first game back guarding Arizona’s crease since Nov. 22 and him displaying some rustiness was expected.

Tonight, Vejmelka and the Coyotes get a chance to avenge that defeat as Buffalo makes the trip to Mullett Arena in Tempe. On the flip side, the Sabres could seal up a regular season sweep with another game added to the win column.

Not even 24 hours ago, Arizona shutout the San Jose Sharks 1-0 after two coaches challenges by Coyotes’ André Tourigny erased two goals from San Jose.

As for the Sabres, they had an emphatic 5-2 victory last night against the Pacific Division leaders, the Vegas Golden Knights. Dylan Cozens and Casey Mittelstadt both capped off Buffalo’s result with three points each.

With both teams playing on the second half of a back-to-back, this matchup will be won by whoever pushes the tempo and how either team exploits the opposition’s defensive structure.

Goaltending Matchup

Following practice on Thursday at Ice Den Scottsdale, Tourigny said Connor Ingram was going to start last night vs. the Sharks, which indicated Vejmelka will face the Sabres once again tonight.

In contrast, Buffalo have yet to release information on which goaltender will play. Currently, the Sabres carry three goalies on their roster: Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen, Devon Levi and former Coyote, Eric Comrie.

Once the news is announced for Buffalo, this will be updated.

Season Statistics

  • Coyotes – Vejmelka: 2-7-2 | 3.50 GAA | .892 SV%
  • Sabres – N/A : 0-0-0 | 0.00 GAA | .000 SV%


Arizona Coyotes: C Barrett Hayton (upper body), D Vladislav Kolyachonok (lower body – IR), D Sean Durzi (lower body), and C Travis Boyd (upper body)

Buffalo Sabres: RW Jack Quinn (Achilles – IR), LW Zemgus Girgensons (lower body – IR), and LW Jordan Greenway (upper body – IR) and LW Jeff Skinner (upper body – IR)

Game Start

  • 7 p.m.
  • Mullet Arena, Tempe, AZ

Two disallowed goals preserve Coyotes controversial 1-0 victory over Sharks

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Alec Cipollini is a reporter of the Arizona Coyotes and Cardinals for Burn City Sports. You can follow him on his X account @AlecCipollini

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