By Sam Bush

It’s true that the Flyers saved a point in the 2-1 OT loss at Columbus the other night, but:

A loss is still a loss!

Even in the bizarre National Hockey League.

You can put lipstick on a pig all you want, but the fact is that the Flyers are on the verge of falling out of the playoffs race!

And tonight in Buffalo, they face an emboldened Sabres team.

On Saturday, the Sabres overcame a 3-1 deficit with three third-period goals in a span of 4:42 to come away with a 4-3 victory. They’ll look to take that momentum against the Flyers.

It was a pleasant change of pace for the Sabres, who have seen several late leads slip away this season and have been dreadful in games that go to overtime.

“It’s nice to finish this one out and be on the opposing side of something like that instead of giving up the lead,” Buffalo center Jack Eichel said.

Newcomer Kyle Okposo leads the Sabres in scoring with 27 points (12 goals, 15 assists). Defenseman Rasmus Ristolainen has been having an excellent season on the blue line and is second in points with 26. Sam Reinhart is quietly third on the team with 24.

“Just how I’m feeling consistency-wise, the consistency has stepped up and in an 82-game schedule that’s the most important thing you can have,” Reinhart said, according to the team’s website.

The Flyers are still looking to regain their form of a month ago. The Flyers had a 10-game unbeaten streak from Nov. 27 to Dec. 14 but have fallen on hard times since then. Since the streak ended, the Flyers have lost eight of their last 10 games.

“The games are so tight that the smallest things can determine between winning or losing,” Flyers goaltender Steve Mason said last week, according to the team’s website. “Even in the games when we were winning 10 in a row, some of those games could have gone either way. It’s a tight league and no games are easy. We’re going through a tough stretch, (and) it’s just a matter of sticking with it here, not getting discouraged and keep pushing forward.”

Jakub Voracek leads the Flyers in points with 39 (13 goals, 26 assists). Captain Claude Giroux is second on the team in points with 34 (10 goals, 24 assists).

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