It wasn’t a pretty goal by any stretch of the means, but when you score your first NHL goal in the most famous arena in all of hockey, you’ll take it anyway you can. Travis Turnbull became the sixth member of the blue and gold to score their first NHL goal of their careers – and he did it in just his second game.
With much of the game clock expired, it appeared that the Sabres and Rangers were destined for overtime again, as the clocked ticked down on a 1-1 tie with both goalies making saves to keep their teams holding down with the tie in place. After keeping it together after the Rangers scored on a heads up play by Boyle – the Sabres responded with a goal by Drew Stafford, who with Ennis and Foligno were again the hottest Sabres on the ice. Despite his enigma in Buffalo – Derek Roy spent more time on the ice making things happen than he spent on the bench.
The Buffalo Sabres helped themselves to two points, and got a little help from the out of town scoreboard. Buffalo now pulls into a tie again with the eighth place Washington Capitals, as they were again able to sneak a point out of their contest. 82 points puts them only two points behind the Ottawa Senators, in seventh, and 5 points behind the Bruins for second.
The New York Rangers spent most of the night playing with a short bench, losing forward Mats Zuccarello when he blocked a shot with his wrist. Zuccarello skated to the bench with his left arm limp at his side, unable to even grasp his stick. While the Rangers applied a lot of pressure at many points during the game, Ryan Miller and company continued to sell out and struggle their way into position to win.
While the rookies are stepping in and filling roles above and beyond the call of duty, Drew Stafford has gone into beast mode, using his strength and skill to dominate offensively. There is no rest for the Buffalo Sabres, as they make the quick trip back across the state to host the Minnesota Wild tomorrow night at the First Niagara Center. With only nine games remaining in their season, they are double digit points out of the final playoff spot, and will be watching the post season in its entirety. Buffalo cannot take them lightly however; as the Wild would love nothing more than to schedule tee times with as many bubble teams as possible because they stole points from them in games where they were desperately needed.
Winnipeg stays in strking distance tonight, as they are only four points back of the Buffalo Sabres. Its a 7PM contest tomorrow, don’t miss out on your chance to be at the arena with the team celebrating another victory (only three home games remain). After Minnesota, Buffalo plays two critical games, one against the Washington Capitals, and one against the leagues hottest team, the Pittsburgh Penguins. The Rangers would love for the Buffalo squad to wrestle two points away from the Pens, as they only trail the Rangers by one point in the division, which would give them first overall.