NHL schedule: Five questions for Saturday

USA TODAY Sports

A daily feature which asks the five hardest-hitting questions imaginable about this day in the NHL. Will our quandaries be answered? (That doesn't count as one of the five questions.)

1. How will the San Jose Sharks fare without Ryan Clowe in the lineup?

Ryane Clowe is currently facing suspension for leaving the bench to fight at the end of Friday's game against the Chicago Blackhawks. While the length of the suspension hasn't been determined yet (he has a hearing on Monday), he is certainly not going to play against the Stars on Saturday. Instead, Scott Gomez will join the Patrick Marleau-Joe Pavelski line tonight.

2. Can the Buffalo Sabres finally get some momentum going?

New Sabres coach Ron Rolston makes his home debut in Buffalo tonight against an Islanders team that seems to be finding its way in the last few games. The last time these two teams met, New York out-shot the Sabres 43-15. This is the Sabres chance to prove to their home crowd that there could be light at the end of the tunnel.

3. Will Montreal show the Rangers that they aren't boring?

After Tuesday's matchup between these two teams, Rangers coach John Tortorella called both teams "bad" and Henrik Lundqvist called Montreal "boring." New York will probably be without Rick Nash and Michael del Zotto tonight. The Rangers have only won once in their last four games, and have played three of those games without their star winger. Losing del Zotto on the back end will not help their cause against a Montreal squad that might have a chip on its shoulder.

4. Can Detroit break their losing streak?

Detroit is currently mired in a five-game losing streak and have wasted three 2-0 leads during that span. The Wings might be lucky if they get two goals against Pekka Rinne tonight. The Nashville goaltender has only allowed four goals in four games.

5. Can Dallas play a solid defensive game for once?

The Stars are predictably struggling without star netminder Kari Lehtonen. Dallas has been unable to hold leads as of late, giving up at least three goals in each of their last four games. The Stars have become accustomed to letting Lehtonen clean up their sloppy mistakes, but they're 1-6-0 with Richard Bachman and Christopher Nihlstorp in the net.

More in the NHL:

Are these the Winter Classic jerseys?

The end of an era in Buffalo

How reliable is NHL.com's shot tracker?

Solving the Sharks' goal-scoring woes

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