If you told me before the game started the Sabres would earn a point against the Pittsburgh Penguins with Patrick Lalime in goal and Thomas Vanek out of the lineup, I would have happily accepted. The Sabres did earn a point after dropping a 2-1 decision to the Penguins in the shootout.
We have heard all week about the players being sick and we seen first hand the lack of effort on the ice. This was a complete turnaround, it was a full 65 minute effort by every player on the ice. The Sabres came out strong but had their momentum derailed quickly after Patrick Kaleta took a goalie interference penalty just over two minutes into the game.
Special teams played a huge role in the game and we got a glimpse of both teams penalty kill in the early going. The Sabres killed off the two minute minor to Kaleta and ended up on a power play of their own. Chris Letang took a hooking penalty and gave Buffalo their best chance of the game with a 5-on-3 advantage. The Sabres didn't take advantage, a theem that continued well into the night.
Buffalo did get the early momentum on a goal by Jason Pominville. Pominville was the right man in the right spot when he fired a rebound into an open net after Fluery could not get over in time. Pittsburgh answered back in the final minute of the period on the one mistake Patrick Lalime made tonight. Lalime was slow to get back into his crease after making a great save on Sidney Crosby and the puck found it's way into the net after knocking him off balance.
The Sabres eventually lost in a shootout after Jason Pominville, Derek Roy and Drew Stafford all failed to score and Lalime allowed a goal to Letang.