Sabres fall to Jets, 4-3
It’s not entirely inconceivable that the Buffalo Bills could do in 17 games what the Buffalo Sabres did in 41.
That would be winning ten games.
We’ll find out on Sunday, but the Sabres in the meantime couldn’t keep up with the Winnipeg Jets and suffered a 4-3 loss at Bell MTS Place. The loss leaves Buffalo at the midway point of the season with an underwhelming 29 points (10-22-9).
The Sabres spent too much time early in the game chasing the Jets around, and that may have worn them down a bit. They eventually came around and started moving the puck well but were plagued by shots that went wide of the net or hit a few goalposts.
Marco Scandella, known for his booming shot but having a hard time this season getting them through, finally scored his first goal as a Sabre on a blast from the point.
Chad Johnson had a rough night, giving up a few goals he’d like to have back. Johnson allowed four goals on 29 shots. The Sabres had the advantage in even-strength possession for the second straight night yet lost again.
Jack Eichel skated well (with a whopping 16 shot attempts) and was having a strong game until he failed to pick up Bryan Little on Winnipeg’s fourth goal.
Johan Larsson and Scott Wilson also scored for the Sabres.
Buffalo will be in Philly to face the Flyers on Sunday.
Here are some detailed stats from the game:
Even-strength scoring chances: Buffalo 23, Winnipeg 15
Even-strength high danger scoring chances: Buffalo 10, Winnipeg 7
Even-strength shot attempts: Buffalo 50, Winnipeg 38
Power plays: Winnipeg 2-4, Buffalo 0-5
Individual shot attempts leaders: Buffalo – Eichel 16, O’Reilly 11, Pominville 6; Winnipeg – Laine 7, Myers 6, Lowry 5, Trouba 5
Buffalo’s ice time leaders: defensemen- Ristolainen 26:24, Scandella 22:33, McCabe 20:34; forwards- O’Reilly 23:07, Okposo 21:04, Kane 21:01
Buffalo’s 5-on-5 corsi leaders % (offensive zone start %): Wilson 72.22 (50.00), Rodrigues 70.83 (60.00), Pominville 68.00 (60.00)
Buffalo’s worst 5-on-5 corsi % (offensive zone start %): Josefson 30.77 (42.86), Larsson 38.46 (50.00), Nolan 40.00 (50.00)
Goaltending: Johnson 29 shots faced, 25 saves, .862 save %