The Buffalo Sabres are on the verge of matching their longest losing streak in team history and have failed to earn even one point on their current slide.
The Sabres will try to end that drought while avoiding a record-tying 10th consecutive defeat Saturday night against a Philadelphia Flyers team looking to break out of a scoring funk.
Buffalo (14-28-3) has lost 10 in a row twice since the beginning of the 2007-08 season. The Sabres went 0-5-5 from Jan. 26, 2007-Jan. 16, 2008, and 0-9-1 during a streak that stretched from last season into this one.
They were drubbed 7-0 by Minnesota on Thursday – their sixth loss by at least three goals during this swoon – prompting coach Ted Nolan to put his team through a hard 40-minute skate Friday that barely involved pucks.
"We have meetings. We talk about certain things then we don’t do them. It’s enough talking. It’s enough yelling and screaming at each other," said Nolan, whose team has been outscored 39-9 the last nine games. "We’ve got an angry team. We’ve got a disappointed team, and we’ve just got to find a way to fight through it."
The Sabres have also dropped four in a row at home for their longest skid there since an 0-4-1 start to this season.
Arriving at an opportune time, Philadelphia (17-21-7) looks to avoid a franchise-worst third consecutive shutout and end a 144:59 scoreless streak that’s currently the eighth-longest in team history.
The Flyers lost 4-0 to Vancouver on Thursday and are averaging 1.91 goals in a 3-7-1 stretch after putting up 2.85 per game in their first 34 contests. They’ve also been outscored 20-9 in a string of six road losses (0-5-1) despite boasting two of the league’s point leaders in Jakub Voracek (52) and captain Claude Giroux (48).
"We want to be successful. We just have to go out there and do it," center Sean Couturier said. "We can’t start yelling and hoping to make plays. … We have to go out there and do it."
The Flyers have won eight of 10 over the Sabres heading into the first matchup this season, and a 5-2 victory April 6 was their third in a row in the series. They also snapped a two-game skid in Buffalo with a 4-3 win Jan. 14, 2014.
Vincent Lecavalier had the deciding score in that visit and has 10 goals and five assists in his past 15 matchups. Matt Read had three goals and two assists in last season’s three-game sweep of Buffalo.
Lecavalier doesn’t have a point in six straight contests, one shy of matching a season high. Read hasn’t scored a goal in 17 games since Dec. 11 and has four points in his last 13 contests.
The Sabres’ Cody Hodgson has a goal and an assist in each of his last two games against Philadelphia. He has two goals and four assists in 44 games this season.
The last team to lose 10 in a row in regulation was Pittsburgh from Jan. 6-23, 2006.