It took 10 home games, but the Buffalo Sabres were finally able to win on home ice, 3-2, in a shootout against the Los Angeles Kings. After the last debacle in Anaheim last Friday, Sabres players and fans were getting fed up with the way the games have been going. Coach Ron Rolston even thought switching up the lines would help, and while fans are still having their doubts about this team, something tonight seemed to have changed in the eyes of the Sabres.
While their game play was still way off par, they were able to stay with the Kings and pull out a win in a shootout.
LA was first on the board, as is most teams against Buffalo this year, and they were able to get on the scoreboard a mere 1:17 into the first period. A couple quick passes off a face-off and the puck went off Justin Williams, his 7th of the season. Buffalo would be out shot 15-4 in the first period and did not record any real scoring opportunities.
The second period would show LA leading the shots again, this time 15-3, but Buffalo was able to get on the scoreboard and tie the game at 1. With a nice pass from Steve Ott to a streaking Cody Hodgson, Hodgson was able to tip in the pass, his 6th of the season, to get Buffalo on the board. That would be the only goal in that period and the crucial 3rd would hopefully decide the game.
Buffalo was still out shot 12-9 in the 3rd, but they were able to get on the board first and break the tie to go up 2-1, with a power play goal by Hodgson, now his 7th of the season. With just over 4 minutes left in the period, LA was able to tie the game up with a wrist shot from Dwight King, his 5th of the season. The game would end tied at 2 and off to overtime we went.
With only 5 minutes to show your stuff, it was all defensive play in overtime as the shots on goal were only 3-1, in favor of LA. Off to a shoot out we would go and Buffalo’s hopes were in the hands of three players. Matt Moulson, Cody Hodgson, and Tyler Ennis were on tap for Buffalo and Mike Richards and Trevor Lewis were on tap for LA. Moulson and Ennis were able to score for Buffalo and Ryan Miller was able to stop both shots from Richards and Lewis to lift Buffalo to the 3-2 win.
Buffalo still has yet to make a two game win streak, but they will have the chance against rivals, the Toronto Maple Leafs on home ice on Friday. LA will have the chance to redeem themselves with a visit to the New York Islanders on Thursday.