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For 13 consecutive games, the Florida Panthers have allowed two goals or fewer.

The Panthers will put that streak on the line Tuesday night against the visiting Buffalo Sabres in Sunrise, Fla.

Florida's defense is a team effort, but starting goalie Sergei Bobrovsky and backup Anthony Stolarz are key figures.

"We like to play good defensive structure," Stolarz said, "and (Bobrovsky) and I know we still have to make big saves."

They have done that often. Bobrovsky leads the Eastern Conference in wins (28-11-2), and Stolarz has an outstanding goals-against average (1.97). Bobrovsky's GAA is 2.36.

Offensively, the big question for the Panthers is the health of winger Matthew Tkachuk, who is coming off his first missed game of the season. His injury has not been disclosed. Tkachuk leads the Panthers in assists (45), and he ranks second in points (65).

Florida's Sam Reinhart ranks second in the NHL with 39 goals. However, he has gone six straight games without a goal.

Carter Verhaeghe is second on the Panthers in goals (30), and Aleksander Barkov ranks second in assists (42).

Gustav Forsling, whose overtime goal helped the Panthers defeat the Washington Capitals 3-2 on Saturday night, leads Florida's defensemen in points (28).

That goal gave the Panthers an 11-2-0 record over their past 13 games.

Florida and Buffalo have met just once this season. The Panthers won that game 4-0 on Feb. 15 as Stolarz made 45 saves and Verhaeghe scored twice.

Buffalo enters Tuesday on a season-best three-game win streak, including an impressive 3-2 shootout victory over the visiting Carolina Hurricanes on Sunday.

Casey Mittelstadt scored in the fourth shootout round, and Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen made 30 saves to improve his record to 17-14-2.

"We're not forcing anything," defenseman Rasmus Dahlin said of Buffalo's win streak. "We're playing like a team right now. We just have to build on this and keep pushing."

Luukkonen, who turns 25 next month, has still played just 80 NHL games.

Buffalo has suffered through some tough injuries this season, playing without three of its top-six defensemen until the Carolina game, when Owen Power and Erik Johnson returned.

In fact, Power -- who had missed six straight games due to an injury to his left arm -- scored on Sunday, his first goal since Dec. 21.

The Sabres, who are just 5-20-2 when trailing after the first period, are led by Mittelstadt, who tops Buffalo in assists (31) and points (44). Dahlin is second in assists (29) and points (43).

Both were high draft picks by the Sabres. Mittelstadt was the eighth pick in 2017 while Dahlin was the first overall selection the next year.

Dylan Cozens, picked seventh in 2019, and Power, selected first in 2021, are other products of Buffalo's recent drafting.

Cozens has 11 goals and 24 assists, but Mittelstadt said his teammate deserves more on the stat line after his performance on Sunday.

"I think 'Cozy' set me up six times (for goal chances)," Mittelstadt said. "I owe him a dinner or something."

--Field Level Media

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