How the Sabres will beat Tampa Bay 

April, 5, 2011

Did you catch the Boston Bruins-New York Rangers game Monday night? That was a crazy comeback by the home team. When New York rookie defenseman Michael Sauer netted the go-ahead goal in the dying minutes of regulation, Madison Square Garden went absolutely bonkers!

I figure we're going to see a few more fabulous finishes Tuesday night.

In Buffalo, for example, the Sabres need a victory to keep the Carolina Hurricanes safely in the rearview mirror. Can they get it?

The Chicago Blackhawks will be on a similar mission in Montreal. If Jonny Toews and his crew can't take care of business, they'll be leaving the door open for the Calgary Flames and Dallas Stars.

All in all, there are nine games on tap for the final Tuesday of the regular season. These Tuesdays have been pretty good to me this year. As things stand, I'm a lovely 23 games over .500. That's not bad, but can I get it done in the playoffs? Well, I guess I'll skate across that rink when I get to it.

For now, here are the Hradek selections for the evening on ice:

Tampa Bay Lightning at Buffalo Sabres

The Bolts bring a five-game winning streak into Buffalo. That's not good news for the Sabres, who are trying to hang on to one of the final playoff berths in the East. And they're trying to do it with little-known rookie goalie Jhonas Enroth. The 22-year-old Swedish stopper has been pretty darn good filling the crease for injured starter Ryan Miller. The law of averages says Tampa Bay is due for a loss. Plus, Buffalo will be fighting tooth-and-nail for a win. The Sabres get it done.

E.J. Hradek

Senior Writer, ESPN The Magazine
E.J. Hradek is a senior writer at ESPN The Magazine, joining the staff prior to its launch in 1998. He began covering hockey as a writer/editor for Hockey Illustrated in 1989.