So far this season, the Buffalo Sabres best weapon has been the shootout, so when they went to the skills competition against the Toronto Maple Leafs, most Sabres fans were feeling pretty good.
But it turns out Toronto is pretty good at shootouts too.
The Leafs scored on a ll three attempts, and only Matt Moulson could score for the Sabres, bringing their streak of shootout domination to a close in a 4-3 shootout loss.
The game opened like many have this season, with the Sabres being outshot and outscored in the first period thanks to a Phil Kessel goal on a nice shot from the Leafs star. Things picked up in the second period, however, with two goals apiece, including the second of the year from Matt Ellis.
Cody Hodgson tied the game early in the third on the power play, and each team snagged the extra point when their combined 23 other shots couldn't find twine.
The Sabres and Leafs games are always entertaining, but tonight was a special night for Zemgus Girgensons. After being demoted to the third line, the 19-year-old responded with one of his, or anyone's, best games of the season, racking up six shots and an NHL season-high 13 hits in over 20 minutes of ice time. He was a one-man team, as nobody else in blue and gold had more than three shots or four hits.
1. With so little work lately, will Ryan Miller continue to dominate Toronto?
Not exactly. Miller was good, and made some big saves for sure, but did let more goals than usual get past him. Not all of them were his fault (I'm looking at you, screening Sabres defensemen) and he did come up huge at the end of the game and in overtime, then totally borked the shootout.
2. Can the Sabres second line put on a repeat performance from last night?
Kinda. Cody Hodgson did score again (woo!) but Matt D'Agostini left early in the game with an injury, forcing players to double shift on this line, and basically breaking any possession numbers we might have.
3. Will we see any fourth line fireworks tonight?
1. Morgan Reilly - scored a goal
2. Zemgus Girgensons - more hits in a single game than any player this season
3. Tyler Bozak - ?
Comment of the Game
Not Miller's best by far.
But that happens…we all must contribute to the Panzer.