Two teams enter looking to stave off playoff elimination another day as the Buffalo Sabres visit the Detroit Red Wings. It's time to continue our NHL odds series with a Sabres-Red Wings prediction, pick, and how to watch.

The Sabres still have an outside chance of catching the Islanders or Panthers for the final wild-card spot in the Eastern Conference, but first, they have to defeat a team just two points behind them in the standings with the Red Wings. they enter the game off a 2-1 loss at the hands of the Panthers but have won four of their last six games. Offensive consistency is what is needed for the Sabres, as they only scored one goal in their loss, but six in the win before that. The Red Wings have won four of their last five, but it may be too little too late for them. They sit eight points behind the last two playoff spots, and would most likely need to win out to have a chance.

Here are the Sabres-Red Wings NHL odds, courtesy of FanDuel

NHL Odds: Sabres-Red Wings Odds

Buffalo Sabres: -1.5 (+195)

Detroit Red Wings: +1.5 (-240)

Over: 6.5 (-134)

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Under: 6.5 (-110)

How To Watch Sabres vs. Red Wings



Time: 7:00 PM ET/ 4:00 PM PT

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Why The Sabres Could Cover The Spread

The Sabres offense is their hallmark. They are averaging 3.55 goals per game which are third in the NHL. they have also scored 20 goals in the last six games, but they are coming in bunches. With low output nights like one goal against Florida, and two against the Islanders contrasted with their six goals against the Flyers. Tage Thompson continues his great year. After missing a few games, Thompson came back and got an assist against Florida. The goalscoring has waned for the star though, as he only has three goals since March 1st. Defenses have been locking him off, with him getting three or fewer shots on goal in five of his last seven games.

The inconsistencies also have shown in Alex Tuch. In 11 games he has played since March 1st, he has seven goals. Those have come in three games though, with two games of two goals, and a hat-trick against the Flyers. He has been neutralized in many games as well, with five games of two or fewer shots on goal. While Tuch has been inconsistent, Jeff Skinner is ramping up. He has 13 points in his last 17 games while scoring seven goals. He has scored a goal in three of his last five and getting plenty of shots on the net. If Thompson and Tuch can play like Skinner tonight, they will win.

Devon Levi is expected to be in goal tonight for the Sabres. The rookie has looked solid in his first two starts to his career. In the first one, he gave up two goals and got an overtime win, saving 31 shots. The second game was just as good, with 34 saves in a 2-1 loss to the Panthers. If he can keep up this play, the Sabres should win, and be very excited about their future.

Why The Red Wings Could Cover The Spread

Unlike the Sabres, the Red Wings are struggling to score on the season. They are averaging 2.96 goals per game, one of the worst in the NHL. Even more troubling are the individual production numbers. Over 32% of their goals this season come from just three guys- Dylan Larkin, David Perron, and Dominik Kubalik. Outside of that, only three other active players have more than ten goals. The Red Wings can be virtually shut down if a defense just focuses on three players. Larkin is also the team's leader in assists, so if Buffalo can stop him, they will most likely win.

The Red Wings have been better than the Sabres on defense though. While the Sabres give up 3.62 goals per game, the Red Wings are only giving up 3.23 goals per game. Jake Walman and Moritz Seider have been positive on defense this year, and have a plus defensive rating when they are on the ice, but the rest of the D has been below average. This allows teams to play catch-up, and get their best guys on the ice when those two are off.

Alex Nedeljkovic is expected to get the start in goal for the Red Wings. He has won each of his last three starts, and been above .935 in save percentage in his last two. He played well enough to make it four wins in his last four, but he got no support on the offensive end, and his solid performance was put to waste.

Final Sabres-Red Wings Prediction & Pick

Tonight just comes down to Buffalo and if they can score. Buffalo, while a bad defense, has enough guys to shut down Larkin, Perron, and Kubalik. They should get one or two goals between them, but that will not be enough if Buffalo is playing at their best. If Tuch and Thompson get off shots, they will win this game.

Final Sabres-Red Wings Prediction & Pick: Sabres -1.5 (+195)