If the Buffalo Sabres are to make a serious push into playoff position, they likely can't afford losing to the few teams below them in the Eastern Conference standings.
The visiting Sabres try to bounce back from a frustrating defeat by handing the lowly Florida Panthers a fourth consecutive loss Thursday night.
Buffalo (13-16-4) was riding a three-game winning streak when it recorded a season-low 14 shots on goal in Tuesday's 2-1 road loss to a Tampa Bay team that dropped its previous three and reeling after the firing of coach Guy Boucher.
One point ahead of the Lightning, the Sabres are 12th in the East and four points behind the New York Rangers for the eighth and final playoff spot.
"No one's going to help us,'' said Buffalo's Ryan Miller, who made 21 saves. "We've got to get two points every night, and (the) first two periods didn't speak to what we've been trying to do lately.''
Miller yielded a goal on two shots in the first period. Buffalo managed four shots over the f...