It comes down to one game. No, the Buffalo Sabres are not out of the playoffs if they lose to the Philadelphia Flyers on Wednesday night at HSBC Arena – but there is no way this young team is going to come back from a 3-1 series deficit, so to use the old hockey cliche, Wednesday night is a must win situation.
Despite each game being decided by one goal, the Buffalo Sabres have been outplayed this series. In order to have a chance at extending this unexpected playoff berth; the Buffalo Sabres are going to have to play a more responsible defensively sound game like they did in game one. The stupid penalties and the defensive lapses must come to a stop.
I unfortunately had to work for Game Three, so I was subject to hearing the game through the updates shouted at me by the guy next to me, who had a laptop with the live stream of the game. I was able to listen to the final ten or so minutes of the third, where Philly did little than try to run out the clock as the Buffalo Sabres offenseve sputtered at an attempt to send game three into overtime.
The Buffalo Sabres need to dig deep. There was no expectation three months ago to make the playoffs, but for the first time since Terry Pegula took over this team officially they have lost two in a row. It was going to happen, new owner momentum was going to last forever. The key now will be how well this team gets over that adversity. If we can stay out of the penalty box and lock it down on defense – we could be looking at going back to Philadelphia tied. If the Sabres can’t stand in front of Ryan Miller and with with some team defense, then we will be holding our breath waiting for July 1, 2011 – and the remodeling of a franchise.