For the second time within a week the Buffalo Sabres faced-off against the Los Angeles Kings and tonight’s match-up featured an
Olympic preview between Ryan Miller and Jonathan Quick. Last time these two teams met the Kings blanked the Sabres 2-0, but tonight the Sabres were determined to beat Quick and that they did as the Buffalo Sabres won their first game on home ice in the shootout.
After a touching tribute to the troops the Buffalo Sabres got off to a lacklustre start and as usual found themselves trailing early but thanks to Steve Ott- who finally resurfaced, they managed to get back into the game. The Buffalo Sabres played one of their best, most complete games tonight and even when they had the lead they kept skating. As a result of their hard work the fans at First Niagara Centre got to see something they haven’t seen all season, a win at a home and a crowd salute.
- After last game I asked where Steve Ott had gone and tonight he seemed to make his triumphant return. He set up Cody Hodgson for the first goal and had 10 hits tonight. I guess Ott just loves home ice, because tonight may have been his best game of the season.
- Both Matt Moulson and Cody Hodgson answered their benching from last game as the two combined for 2 goals and 3 hits. Their effort tonight was much better and they looked like a great first line alongside Ott. Moulson even scored the first goal in the shootout. Moulson and Hodgson are back on track.
- Once again the Buffalo Sabres got off to a very slow start but as soon as Ott set up Hodgson they found their legs and really took the game to the Kings and showed them that they weren’t going to be pushovers. But the Sabres do need to learn to start the game better.
- What a game by Ryan Miller! Tonight was a much anticipated battle between Ryan Miller and Jonathan Quick and tonight Ryan Miller came out on top as he outplayed Quick and gave his team a shot to win. In fact if Miller hadn’t been on his game the Sabres don’t win this game. With an injury to Quick and Miller’s stellar game he may have retaken the lead for Team USA. Great game from Ryan Miller who finished with 43 saves. Yet another game with 40+ shots that Miller comes out with the W.
- While they did manage to drag out the win they look completely lost in the defensive zone. Someone needs to teach these guys to play defence. More often than not they’re standing around, leaving people wide open. Tyler Ennis has to be harder on the puck and Henrik Tallinder has to tie up his man on the tying goal.
- Tonight was a classic Sabres game. The Sabres want to be a hard team to play against and boy were they tonight as they hit everything that moved in a white jersey. They played hard hitting hockey and the Kings don’t like getting hit which forced them off the puck and to shy away. The Sabres finished with 31 hits.
- Despite the win the Buffalo Sabres still need to take more shots on the opposition. They managed just 17 shots (less than last week) in the win. They had just 4 in the first and 3 in the second. They need to shoot the puck every chance they get, you can’t score if you don’t shoot.
The Buffalo Sabres got their first home win of the season and are back on the winning path, hopefully they can carry the momentum going forward.