Feb. 10, 2013; Buffalo, NY, USA; Buffalo Sabres goalie Ryan Miller (30) makes a save on a shot by Boston Bruins defenseman Zdeno Chara (33) during the second period at First Niagara Center. Mandatory Credit: Timothy T. Ludwig-USA TODAY Sports

Buffalo Sabres vs. Boston Bruins: Knee Jerk Reaction


Anyone who watched last night’s game between the Buffalo Sabres and the New York Islanders had to be wondering: would the Sabres’ offense show up tonight when they hosted the Boston Bruins at First Niagara Center?  Or would it be another lackluster performance that put the weight of the world on the shoulders of Ryan Miller?

Drat.

After yet another head-scratching no-show by the offense of the Buffalo Sabres, the Boston Bruins waltz out of town with a 3-1 victory, while the Sabres are left to explain how they could possibly only push one goal past Boston’s backup goaltender, Anton Khudobin.

You would have thought that Lindy Ruff and his staff would have threatened his team with death by firing squad, or something equally drastic, after the effort his team displayed in Long Island.  Well, if the coaches did threaten the players, you could not tell, because Buffalo was outplayed from buzzer to buzzer in this one.  At no point did I ever feel like the offense was going to put the biscuit in the basket; the Sabres just never got any meaningful pressure on Khudobin.  The 26 shots on goal the Sabres registered is pretty misleading, since it makes it seem as if their offense was better than it had been against the Islanders.  Yeah – and standing next to my two year-old makes me seem as if I’m tall.  Even though the Sabres had less SOG last night, they had better scoring opportunities, and they capitalized on them.  Tonight, they had next to no real chances to score a goal.  Tyler Ennis had the best of the night, after Drew Stafford set him up for an easy top shelf goal against a defenseless Khudobin.  Other than that, those 26 SOG never amounted to diddly boo, as my father used to say.

The lone bright spot in tonight’s game was the play of Ryan Miller.  Just think, Sabres fans: you have a Hart Trophy candidate in Thomas Vanek, and the way Miller is playing, he could be fighting for the Vezina Trophy, as well.   If only this team could get some consistent play, night in and night out.  Watching the game, all I kept thinking was, “There’s no way we should even be this close.”  Miller did everything he could, just as he did last night, and the last time the Sabres went up against Boston.  Tonight’s loss will be given to him, but clearly through no fault of his own.

I leave Buffalo disappointed, and still waiting for the team to develop an identity other than the “We’re praying Thomas Vanek and Ryan Miller save our butts every night” one we’ve been seeing far too much of this year.

Check back in a little bit for Tim’s full game recap!  And as always, leave me your comments below, or follow me @theaveragedick!

Tags: Boston Bruins Buffalo Sabres

  • Craig C.

    Last night it looked like a pro team going up against a high school team. If not for Miller, it could have been 10-1. Our passes don’t connect, we give the puck away regularly, we look totally disorganized on the power play…..etc.,etc.

    I’m afraid Regier-Ruff have made a shambles of this franchise. Pegula might be the biggest disappointment. He drank the Kool-Aid regarding the team’s GM and coach.

    • http://www.facebook.com/Drunkenribeye Rich Spalding

      Ugh – I know. The team can pass it off as being tired from a busy week of games – and yes, they have played a lot of games in a little amount of time – but like you said, the Sabres looked like they belong in a different, inferior league, and a lot of their problems have been there since day one of this season. At no point last night was I excited or optimistic that the Sabres would tie it at 2-all. Even against Montreal there was a spark; last night, nothing at all.