NHL Preview: Winnipeg Jets vs. Buffalo Sabres

20130219-Game-LGThe Winnipeg Jets are currently sitting in ninth place in the East and need to win in order to take out the Rangers for the last playoff spot. Meanwhile, the Sabres will not be making a playoff appearance and will look to better their odds in the draft lottery by staying healthy and focusing more on their future prospects. Since coming back into the league, the Jets have been a decent addition as they thrive on their passionate fan base.

Winnipeg Jets

The Jets need to win on the road after losing their last game. In their last ten games, the Jets have not been pushing for the playoffs like they should be, only winning five games. Overall, they have a 23-19-3 record and have 49 points, just a couple behind the eighth place New York Rangers. On the road the Jets are OK straddling the .500 mark with a 10-10-2 record. Andrew Ladd leads the team in both goals and assists, so the Jets will be relying on him to really perform this last week of the regular season. Meanwhile, rookie Evander Kane has had a breakout season leading the team in penalty minutes and scoring a large handful of goals himself. Sports betting sites have had a field day with Evander Kane as his strength and skill have made him a potential superstar in the years to come in Winnipeg.

Buffalo Sabres

It will be another year of watching the playoffs instead of playing them for the Buffalo Sabres.  After a disappointing 19-20-6 season, the Sabres are looking to the offseason. But they have every chance to win tonight’s game and end the Jets hope of a playoff spot. Their stats are nearly identical in goals per game and goals against averages this season. Thomas Vanek leads the team with 17 goals and in total points with 36. Such low numbers are just an indication of how the season has gone for the Sabres so far this season. This season the Sabres have allowed 36 power play goals compared to the Jets’ 26.

Many sports books are giving the edge to the Jets, but not because they are leaps and bounds better than the Sabres. Betting sites do acknowledge that these two teams are pretty evenly stacked, however, the desperation of the Jets may be too much for the Sabres to handle. Watch for enforcer Steve Ott to hack away at the Jets as many of the best online betting sites know that he will probably rack up the penalty minutes for Tuesdays game.

Read more here for more news and information on this and many other games heading into the last week of the NHL regular season.