The Sabres did it. They snapped their losing skid and kept pace in the tight Eastern Conference playoff race. All of this at home, a place where they are below .500 for the year.
A night after being badly outshot and outscored, the Sabres filled the net and made sure to show no mercy against another struggling club. Buffalo found a way to keep Jhonas Enroth clean and gave up few scoring chances, a major piece to the victory.
The rash of injuries the Sabres are suffering from didn’t affect the outcome for one night as both new call ups (Brayden McNabb and Paul Szczechura) had strong showings.
Lindy Ruff and his staff will need to find a way to keep his rookies in simple situations in order to keep them from making glaring mistakes.
Last night may end up being one of the last contest Bruce Boudreau coaches for Washington. It doesn’t seem like his message is getting through to his players nor are his players giving very much of an effort on the ice. They could be a team to watch if they get a coach who gets through to that ultra-talented roster.
- Zack Kassian followed up one strong performance with a great one against the Captials. Not only did the big forward notch his first career NHL goal, he was engaged physically and showed many of the attributes that have Sabres fans salivating over his future. More big games from him will do wonders for his development and the team.
- Brayden McNabb may break the streak of rookies to record points during their call up. However, it doesn’t really matter. He had a game high six hits and was generally angry. Looks like he may be a young Robyn Regehr in the making. Between T.J. Brennan and McNabb, Gragnani wouldn’t have a spot on this team if it were up to me.
- Szczechura had a great night. He has to be hungry to get back in the league. A nice luxury to have a capable guy with NHL experience waiting in the minors for you.
- Enroth was good. Not great considering he wasn’t too busy. But he played a great game. A very good bounce back after a few tough outings.
- Ville Leino finally got on the scoresheet. He has been playing better and notched an assist for his efforts. Strong play from him needs to continue.
1. Luke Adam
2. Paul Szczechura
3. Christian Ehrhoff