Harry Neale summed it up best. “For the 2nd straight game…the Sabres were outshot, outworked, and outchanced.”
The Buffalo Sabres lost 3-1 against the Washington Capitals tonight, and lost by the same exact score to the New Jersey Devils on Wednesday. They are now only a couple wins better than Eastern Conference bottom feeders Carolina, Tampa Bay, and the Islanders.
With tonight’s loss, the Sabres have now only won 4 of their 13 December games. In the 11 losses, Buffalo scored a measly 18 goals – a paltry 1.6 goals per game average. So far this season, only 6 teams in the entire NHL have fewer goals than the Sabres. No teams in the NHL have a higher payroll than Buffalo.
So, what gives?
As stated previously, Harry Neale’s summarization explains it all, in the simplest of forms. The team didn’t give a full 60 minute effort. There were bursts of offensive aggression, but aside from the lone goal, they could not capitalize and put the puck on the net. Not finishing plays has quickly become the plague haunting the Sabres, and will spell doom for them very soon if their ways do not begin changing.
For the 2nd straight game, Thomas Vanek’s line was responsible for the lone goal. Attention, all Sabres not named Vanek, Pominville, or Hecht: you are needed. Some of you are paid VERY well to produce points, and it’s about time for you to start earning your paychecks.
What I have now dubbed the “Connolly Curse” continued tonight, as Christian Ehrhoff left the game with an upper body injury. The often injured Connolly left the team during the offseason, and has somehow seemed to leave his injury demons behind for current Sabres to become possessed by.
With the year 2012 just around the corner, let’s hope the Sabres will make a resolution to working harder. It’s time to get back on track, and to be reminded of their reason for existence, as dictated by owner Terry Pegula.