In his worst outing so far this season, Ryan Miller gave up five goals to the Boston Bruins at home, as the Buffalo Sabres fell 5-2 tonight at the First Niagara Center. The struggling Sabres were outshot by an embarrassing margin of 34-16, as they continue to fall further down the ranks.
“I need to come up with some saves for the guys. It’s the most disappointed I’ve been with myself all year,” Ryan Miller stated after the game. “You know, 3-2 at home, you gotta give the guys an opportunity. Just two goals go through me. That’s not going to get it done.”
Just under six minutes into the third period, John Scott took a run at Boston’s Loui Eriksson and dropped him to the ice with a controversial shoulder-to-head collision. The play resulted in a match misconduct for Scott and a five minute major that gave the Bruins the upper hand for the majority of the period.
“I’m not going to comment on it,” Buffalo’s coach Ron Rolston said after the game.
Boston scored on the ensuing powerplay, which ended any hopes of a Buffalo comeback. Eriksson was hospitalized after the hit from Scott but is expected to return to Boston on Thursday.
The first period of tonight’s game was a better initial effort by Buffalo, but they struggled to find the back of the net against the inexperienced Chad Johnson who got the start in goal for the Bruins. Johnson made 14 saves in his first start of the season filling in for Tuukka Rask.
Boston got on the board 11:01 into the game with a shot from Jerome Iginla that Milan Lucic deflected past Ryan Miller. The Sabres managed six shots on goal in the first to the Bruins seven.
Boston came out with a vengeance in the second lead by Lucic who scored his second goal of night only 40 seconds into the period. The Bruins’ rush was capped off by a beautiful feed from Iginla to Lucic that beat Mark Pysyk breaking to the net on defense. The Sabres were outskated during the opening minutes of the second period, but managed to kill off a 5-on-3 Bruins advantage and generated a goal on their ensuing powerplay. At 8:21 into the period, Cody Hodson found the back of the net for Buffalo, capitalizing on a costly Bruins bench penalty. Boston answered back just three and a half minutes later on another successful offensive rush. Dougie Hamilton recorded the goal to put the Bruins up 3-1 at 11:50. The Sabres’ offense ceased to quit in the period with an unlikely goal from Nikita Zadorov, the first of his NHL career to bring the Sabres within one.
The Bruins stole the momentum on a weak goal from Torey Krug 4:13 into the third period, one that Ryan Miller wished he could have back. The rest of the game was all Boston after John Scott’s dirty hit on Loui Eriksson. The play resulted in a lengthy man-up advantage for the visiting team that allowed Krug to earn another goal for Boston, and put the game out of reach for the Sabres. Buffalo’s offense sputtered and stalled, only managing 2 shots on goal the entire third period.
The Bruins are back in Boston tomorrow night to take on the top-ranked San Jose Sharks. The Sabres travel to Florida this Friday to take on the Panthers, followed by a game on Saturday against the Lightning in Tampa Bay.