Jeff Skinner is in the midst of a month-long goal drought after posting 36 goals in his first 57 games with the Buffalo Sabres.
With Skinner struggling to find the back of the net, the Sabres have lost five straight games and slipped well out of the playoff picture.
"We’re not where we want to be," Skinner told the Buffalo News on Wednesday. "That’s not a great feeling. Again, we can only control what we do from here on."
The Sabres, who own just a 6-12-3 since the All-Star break, now sit 12 points back of the Columbus Blue Jackets for the final wild-card spot.
Skinner, who is won goal away from matching his career-high of 37, has managed six assists during his 12-game goal drought.
"Everyone is competitive," he said. "Everyone in here wants to win. Everyone in here wants to produce. During times those things aren’t happening you sort of have to bear down and work through it. It happens to everyone. It happens to every team and every player in the league. You have to work through it and get through it as quick as you can."
The pending unrestricted free agent has managed 37 shots since scoring two goals against the New York Rangers on Feb. 15 and Sabres head coach Phil Housley believes isn't far from finding the back of the net again.
"When he’s at his best he’s stripping pucks from behind, he’s reloading well, turning pucks over and he’s getting opportunities," Housley said. "He’s getting a lot of looks. It’s going to come for him. At this point, since he hasn’t scored in a long time it gets elevated, but he’s still getting the looks... He just needs to continue to find ways to create."
Skinner also remains confident he'll regain his scoring touch.
"You’re going to go through stretches where things aren’t going your way or you’re not finishing as many chances as you’d like, but you want to create as much as you can," Skinner said. "If you keep creating, odds are that over the course of time it will even out and things will start to go in. As a line, as a team, I think we’ve created a little more than we’ve gotten over the last few games and we’ve got to keep doing that."
The Sabres (30-30-9) will host the Pittsburgh Penguins on Thursday night.