The Buffalo Sabres had a sleepy start to the game which is never a good idea against a team like the Winnipeg Jets. Brendan Guhle made his presence know early in the game, but not in a good way. He went off for hooking Joel Armia just 4:47 into the game.
The second-ranked power play in the league took the ice and capitalized to score the first goal of the game. Snipe Patrik Laine beat Robin Lehner with a shot from the faceoff dot, with Kyle Connor providing the screen in front.
Buffalo would start to get some sustained pressure on the Jets in the middle of the period. On one of their best shifts of the period, Jack Eichel wired a shot by Steve Mason from the faceoff dot on a delayed penalty to tie the game at one.
The game didn’t stay tied very long. Only 49 seconds later Dustin Byfuglien scored his second of the season and second against the Sabres. Again there was a screen in front that hindered Lehner’s view of the puck.
After 20 minutes the Jets held a 2-1 lead on the scoreboard and 13-9 lead in shots on goal.
Things got ugly in a hurry in the middle frame. Nikolaj Ehlers burned Lehner 1:26 into the period with a shot from the faceoff dot. That goal ended Lehner’s night as he was replaced by Chad Johnson.
The Jets continued to toy with the Sabres. Kyle Connor turned Jake McCabe inside out and put it by Johnson with ease to make it 4-1. Winnipeg wasn’t done yet. Ehlers scored his second of the night with a laser to the top corner after Nolan got a four-minute roughing penalty to make it 5-1.
Jack Eichel got one back for the Sabres in the final minute of the period. He made a nice pass to Ryan O’Reilly who had an easy goal at the back door with the man advantage. Through two periods the Jets held a commanding 5-2 lead.
The final period was filled with scoring. Kyle Connor started it off scoring his second of the game to make it 6-2. Just over a minute later Jason Pominville would pick up a nice bounce off the back wall to break his long scoring drought and get the Sabres back within three.
It got a little interesting late when Okposo found Eichel in front after a forecheck by Rasmus Ristolainen to make it a two-goal game. In the final minute, however, former Sabres prospect Joel Armia hit the empty net with a full length of the ice shot to seal the 7-4 win for the Jets.
Final Score: Jets 7, Sabres 4
Shots on Goal: Jets 37 | Sabres 34
Jets Goal Scorers: Laine (19), Byfuglien (2), Ehlers (18, 19), Connor (13, 14) and Armia (7)
Sabres Goal Scorers: Eichel (16, 17), Pominville (9) and O’Reilly (11)
Three Stars of the Game
1. Kyle Connor (2 G, 1 A)
2. Nikolaj Ehlers (2 G)
3. Jack Eichel (2 G, 1 A)
Comment of the Game
Thank god this Eichel kid can play
everyone else on the ice, blue or white sweater, were just standing there watching the kid tee off. Reminded me of the time Ovi took b2b slappers on the PP that go high, so he goes for the third and lobs a screwball past the goalie who’s expecting a blast and ends p sliding past the icing line