“Just play your game and be big out there and go to the net,” Foligno said. “I got a good pass from Cody and we turned things around. When you are physical and you work hard and you skate, when you do all those little things… works first and then points come second. You gotta work to get points in this league.”
Four straight unanswered goals from the Sabres proved to be the difference in this one as they improve their record to 8-23-3 on the season.
“Tonight it was nice to see the team rewarded for not giving up and continuing to work and we got the breaks when we needed them,” Sabres’ head coach Ted Nolan stated. “We gotta compete. When we compete we’re good. We can’t compete for 55 minutes, we have to compete for 60 minutes and that little lapse we had wasn’t necessary but the guys found a way to come back.”
The Sabres put on good pressure throughout the entire first period, outshooting the Jets (15-16-5) by an impressive margin of 19-7. Despite several scoring chances, including many that came on an opportunistic 5-on-3 powerplay, Buffalo was not able to manufacture a goal.
Winnipeg’s Mark Scheifele had the hot hand early on in the second period getting his team on the board at 1:02. Poor puck possession in the neutral zone by the Sabres allowed Scheife to escape on an odd-man rush and snap a quick wrist shot past Ryan Miller’s blocker side. On the very same shift, Scheifele scored again as a result of another Buffalo turnover in the neutral zone. Scheifele beat Miller’s blocker side for the second time in just 36 seconds.
Buffalo answered halfway through the period to bring the score within one. Steve Ott made a heads-up play on a rebound to stuff it past Jets’ netminder, Ondrej Pavelec. Drew Stafford and Mike Weber got credit for assists on the play.
Nolan’s intermission speech must have fired up the Sabres because it didn’t take long for them to tie the game. Just 50 seconds in, Marcus Foligno received a beautiful pass from Cody Hodgson that allowed him to slip it past Pavelec. Buffalo carried this momentum and less than two minutes later they took the lead. At 2:31, Matt Moulson scored on the go-ahead goal on the powerplay. He deflected a shot from Ehrhoff to give Buffalo their first lead of the night.
The Sabres got a rare goal from their fourth line to make it for straight goals for Buffalo. Matt Ellis added to their lead late in the period with assists from Porter and Flynn.
Mike Weber ended the night at +1 and earned the second star of the game.
Ryan Miller saved 25 of 27 shots in the win.
The Sabres continue their three-game home stand this Thursday against the Boston Bruins.