Found January 21, 2013 on
Queen City Sports:
(Photo by Graig Abel/NHLI via Getty Images)
The Buffalo Sabres got their second win of the young season in as many days with a 2-1 win over host Toronto in the Maple Leafs’ home opener on Monday night. The win moves Buffalo to 2-0 on the season.
Buffalo’s top line once again shined as Cody Hodgson, Thomas Vanek, and Jason Pominville all got on the score sheet once again. Hodgson and Pominville each had a goal while Vanek assisted on Pominville’s tally.
Although getting the win is obviously the most important thing, it’s the way Buffalo has won their first two games that is most impressive.
Sunday afternoon they used an aggressive offense and power play to rout the Flyers; on Monday, they used physicality and the stellar goaltending of Ryan Miller to get the victory.
Miller looked in a different zone tonight, including a point blank save on defenseman John-Michael Liles, making 34 saves to hold the Leafs to just a single goal.
It was a much sloppier game on the part of the Sabres, and they were outplayed by the Leafs for a large part of the contest, including the end of the game when Nazem Kadri got the Leafs on the board with a powerplay goal. But again, they got the win, and that’s all that matters.
The Sabres might be the luckiest team in the NHL right now. They’ve had three pucks go into the back of their net waved off: two against the Flyers and one against the Maple Leafs.
After going 3-for-6 on the power play against Philadelphia, they went 0-for-3 against Toronto. They not only had zone entry issues once again, but they had trouble keeping control once they actually were able to set up inside the Maple Leaf zone.
Buffalo was shorthanded nine times. They need to be happy it wasn’t against a better offensive team because there is no doubt the result would’ve been different.
It was expected to be a sloppier contest after playing yesterday, but, aside from a few spurts of control, the Sabres had problems getting into the flow of the game throughout the night.
Thomas Vanek and Jason Pominville haven’t missed a beat at all from their success of last season. In two games they have 10 combined points, and are on a different level from the rest of the team.
Mikhail Grigorenko wasn’t too noticeable on the ice tonight, but he did play X:xx more than yesterday. It feels that a breakout performance is coming.
While it wasn’t the best game, the Sabres beat a team they should beat every time. If they can do that all season, they will have no problem making a playoff run
Buffalo proved that they can win games that they didn’t play all to well. Then again, when Miller plays the way he did, it’s hard to lose.
Kudos to Pat Kaleta for going right after Phil Kessel after he made contact with Miller. That’s the type of thing that needs to be done every single time. He may not have “meant” to make contact with Miller, but Kessel got what was coming to him after.
The Sabres need to sure a lot of things up in their own zone. Too many giveaways, and too many players are being left open for scoring chances.
Ryan Miller – 34 saves
Jason Pominville – Goal (1), Assist(4)
Dion Phaneuf – 28:43 TOI
The post Sabres Defeat Maple Leafs 2-1: Immediate Reactions appeared first on Queen City Sports.
BEST OF MAXIM
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Picture courtesy of Bill Wippert/Getty Images.
By: Connor Nielen (@ConnorNielen)
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