Overreactions, 12th Edition: Dumpster fire extinguished, Sabres beat Flames

Things have not been going well for the Sabres. Not at all. Blowing through a homestand, losing three of the first four, Buffalo needed to end the five-game stretch on a high note.

On a night where the Sabres couldn’t make the most of their opportunities, they made it out with two points.

Despite a stellar performance from Flames backup Henrik Karlsson, Buffalo was able to get the goals they needed, defeating Calgary 2-1.

Buffalo got goals from Drew Stafford and Nathan Gerbe to improve to 7-5-0 on the season.

“With the way things have gone, we needed a big win like this,” said Drew Stafford, who gave Buffalo a 1-0 lead in the first period. “We were going through a little bit of a rough patch, some tough games, and not necessarily playing a full 60 minutes. But tonight I thought that was a little bit different. We had a solid game against a team that has been playing pretty well.”

Stafford opened the scoring in the first period, ripping a one timer off a feed from Derek Roy. The goal snapped a seven-game goalless drought.

Gerbe made it 2-0 early in the third, burying a deflected Marc-Andre Gragnani pass. Calgary would counter exactly four minutes later as Alex Tanguay deflected a Jay Bouwmeester shot in the high slot, but it wasn’t enough.

Jhonas Enroth walked away with the win, making 29 saves in a solid performance. Enroth moves to 3-0-0, and now owns a 1.29 GAA and .958 save percentage, both near the top of the league.

  • Pretty sure Tyler Myers had his best game of the season, or at least his best in a long time. He was paired with superstar blueliner Andrej Sekera, and both had very good games. Sekera tallied an assist on Stafford’s goal, and is now +8 on the season.
  • Surprised nobody booed Chris Butler. I thought all former Sabres got booed? I guess I’ll keep that in mind when Toronto makes their first visit.
  • This was the first time the Sabres have won this season without Thomas Vanek or Jason Pominville earning a point. Both were held off the scoresheet. It was only the second time that has even happened, with the shutout loss in Tampa Bay being the only other time neither recorded a point.
  • A shutout would’ve been nice, solely to make worse the non-issue we call a “goaltending controversy.” The postgame show could’ve been unbearable. Watch Ryan Miller play great tomorrow night, then there’ll be nothing to talk about.
  • Buffalo’s powerplay looked fantastic even though it didn’t score. During the three first period powerplays, the Sabres threw 13 shots on goal. The chances were there, but it took Karlsson standing on his head to keep the scoreline reasonable.
  • Corey Tropp’s inaugural scoreline: zero points, 6:19 TOI, one hit, one takeaway. Lindy was very pleased with his effort tonight. Something tells me he’s gonna find a way to pot a goal before Kaleta comes back.
  • As of the time that it was witnessed in the hallway after the game, Jochen Hecht is growing a mustache.
  • Marc-Andre Gragnani made a nice return, picking up an assist on the Gerbe goal and moving the puck well on the powerplay. Good recovery from a rough stretch and a trip to the press box.
  • This game may very well have been Ville Leino’s best outing in North America this season. Was far from the usual liability. Had a few chances to score, but didn’t get the right bounces. A performance to build on.
  • The fire alarm lights at the arena were flashing for a good half-hour stretch from the first period through intermission to the second. No one seemed to think it was a big deal, so good thing we all didn’t die.
  • A very strong effort overall from the team. Only three Sabres had over 20 minutes of ice time. Everyone played well enough to justify it.

Back at it tomorrow night in Ottawa.

Posted on November 4, 2011, in Sabres/NHL and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.

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