BOS -- Good (early) morning from the Boston airport. The Sabres are already in Ottawa as losers of two of three, but they will wake up in essentially the same playoff predicament they found themselves in Thursday morning.
The Sabres remain two points out of eighth place in the Eastern Conference standings, though they now trail Washington for the final postseason spot instead of Winnipeg. The Capitals beat Tampa Bay in overtime and the Jets lost in Vancouver on a busy Thursday night.
With 14 games left, the Sabres not only need to catch the teams they are chasing, they need to finish the season ahead of them. Buffalo lags well behind in the first tiebreaker -- regulation and overtime wins -- so merely pulling even will not get them into the playoffs.
The Sabres are scheduled to skate at noon in Ottawa. Part of their focus should be performing better in crunch time. They entered the third period tied, 1-1, against both Winnipeg and Boston this week, but they lost both games, 3-1. The Sabres are tied for the third-fewest goals in the NHL during third periods.
Corey Tropp, meanwhile, continues to show he deserves to be an NHL regular. The rookie led the Sabres with four blocked shots during the 3-1 loss to the Bruins and added two hits and one shot in 13:16 of ice time.