After a strong start, Buffalo falls to Detroit

Mar 16, 2024; Detroit, Michigan, USA;  Buffalo Sabres right wing JJ Peterka (77) skates with the
Mar 16, 2024; Detroit, Michigan, USA; Buffalo Sabres right wing JJ Peterka (77) skates with the / Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

On a three-game winning streak and a chance to make up ground in the playoff race, the Buffalo Sabres took on the Detroit Red Wings for a Saturday matinee in Motown. After blowing out the Red Wings earlier in the week, the Sabres beat the Islanders last game.

Currently sitting three points out of the playoffs, a win and some help meant Buffalo would be just one point out. Things started well for the Sabres as Tage Thompson scored his 20th goal of the season on the power play to give Buffalo a 1-0 lead.

After the first period, it was all Detroit. Just a few minutes into the second period, the Red Wings tied it up thanks to a Christian Fischer wrap-around to make it 1-1. Patrick Kane would give Detroit a 2-1 lead as he scored from a pass courtesy of JT Compher who was on the ice.

It didn't get any better for Buffalo when Daniel Sprong extended Detroit's lead to 3-1 with a shot that Sabres goaltender Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen should've had. With Luukkonen pulled, the Red Wings scored on the empty net and they would win the game by a final score of 4-1.

Postgame thoughts

Buffalo started strong. At some moments, you can tell they were getting under the Red Wing's skin. For the next 40 minutes, they disappeared. You have to give credit to Detroit, they did an excellent job of shutting the Sabres down for the last two periods.

Even though Luukkonen didn't play his best game, it's not his fault Buffalo's offense was nowhere to be seen for the last 40 minutes. On top of that, the Ottawa Senators beat the New York Islanders in overtime. At the moment, Buffalo is back to being five points out of the playoffs.

This next week is going to be vital for Buffalo. It could very well determine if they stay alive or it could end their playoff hopes. This trip will be a four-game span in Western Canada and it starts with the team Buffalo has never beaten, the Seattle Kraken on Monday night.