Division rivals make for tough games for Sens

Including Tuesday’s game against the Senators, the Sabres will play four of their next five games against division rivals.
For the Senators, including Tuesday’s, it’s three in four.
In what is probably the league’s tightest division, that gives these games extra weight
Before Tuesday’s games, Boston sat four point clear of the pack, but only three points separated the second-place Maple Leafs from the fifth-place Senators.
“Those division games are big opportunities for us to either climb or push someone back,” said Buffalo captain Jason Pominville.
“If you look at our division, every team is pretty good and right in the hunt, so those division games are really important.
“You’re so close to being one of the top teams in the division, and so close to being one of the bottom teams. There’s not a big difference.”
Jason Spezza tries as best he can to regard all points as equal, no matter what division or conference they come from.
But when you lose two points to a division rival, it’s tough to make them up, with shootouts and three-point games.
“We know this is a team we’re very tight with in the standings and a team we’ll probably be competing with down the stretch,” he said.
“So we definitely look at it as a more important game.
“We feel like this is a team we’re going to have to beat out to make the playoffs, so they’re important games.
“I don’t think we look at the standings as much now, or the significance of the points. But we have talked about these points being just as important now as in March when we’re fighting for a playoff and you can really see who you’re fighting against.
“Us, Toronto, Monteal and Buffalo – we’re all lumped together now. We’re eventually going to have to play each other a bunch and weed the weaker teams out, so you want to be sure you’re getting your wins while you can.”

What do you think? Leave a comment