It was one of those nights when everything went right for the Sabres. Who knew when the game started just after 9 PM Eastern time that the number 10 would be so prominent. Drew Stafford scored his 10th goal of the season just 10 seconds into the game. The number 10 and the name Drew Stafford were the story of the evening. When all was said and done, the Sabres beat the Oilers 10-2 and Drew Stafford netted a hat trick.
The goals went in early and often for the Sabres in their first game back from the All-Star break. Buffalo led 3-0 after one period and had a 4-0 lead before the Oilers finally beat Ryan Miller. The Oilers goal did not help them seize the momentum however. The Sabres scored three more second period goals and led 7-1 after 40 minutes. The first seven goals were scored by seven different Sabres.
As great as tonight's game was it is just another two points and a building block towards the ultimate goal of reaching the playoffs. It's really about stringing together some wins instead of one dominating performance. The offense looked great and there were plenty of positives that came from tonight's game. Drew Stafford had a hat trick, Tim Connolly netted a pair of goals and plenty of guys padded their offensive statistics.
The flip side of the story is that the road trip continues tomorrow night. The last time the Sabres scored 10 goals in a game was January 18, 2009 when they beat the Atlanta Thrashers 10-1. The scary thing is that they followed that game with a 4-2 loss the next night against the Toronto Maple Leafs. It will be a tough task to keep from repeating that disturbing trend.
The Calgary Flames are next up for Buffalo and they are not an easy opponent. Calgary is 28-14-4 and in third place in the Western Conference. They are even more impressive at home, sporting a 17-5-3 record. Calgary has been really good lately with a 7-3-0 record in their last 10. The Flames will be well rested as well, this will be their first game since the All-Star break.