The Buffalo Sabres were unable to solve the red-hot Ben Bishop on Tuesday night, as Bishop earned his third consecutive shutout and the Sabres fell by a score of 2-0.
The Sabres certainly had their chances, including an opportunity by Tage Thompson in the first period. Overall, Buffalo attempted a whopping 61 shots on goal to Dallas’ 37, and outshot them 35-27, but little things made the execution of some plays less-than-perfect and the Sabres couldn’t squeeze it out in the end.
Neither team was able to find the back of the net in the first period, despite a handful of penalties on both sides. The Stars had back-to-back power plays with Marco Scandella and then Zach Bogosian in the box, both on delay of game calls. The Sabres then found themselves playing 4-on-4 and then on a power play of their own.
Roope Hintz opened the scoring with his sixth goal of the season 7:29 into the second period, taking a shot on net from inside the face-off circle to the left of Linus Ullmark. The puck went high and quickly in and out of the net to put the Stars up 1-0.
(If, like some, you’re not familiar with Hintz: he’s in his first NHL season with the Stars and has appeared in 44 games this season. He’s spent part of this season, and all of last season, with Texas sin the AHL.)
Less than five minutes later, Hintz scored his second of the night to make it a 2-0 game.
The Sabres outshot Dallas in each of the three periods, but couldn’t solve Bishop, who’s now played over 200 consecutive minutes without allowing a goal. The Stars also did a great job of blocking Buffalo’s attempts, with 16 blocks to Buffalo’s four.
When asked about the team’s offensive output after the game, Jeff Skinner said the Sabres ‘could’ve done more’ - which is, of course, always going to be true when a team doesn’t score at all.
It also hurts that the Sabres were missing captain Jack Eichel, one of their leading offensive producers. Eichel was serving the first of his two-game suspension. In his absence, Alex Nylander played his first NHL game of the season and first since April 7, 2018. Nylander had one shot on goal and played 13:16.
Rasmus Dahlin led the Sabres with 24:50 ice time. He also had two shots, two hits and two takeaways. Ullmark made 25 saves.
With tonight’s loss, Buffalo falls to 19-11-4 at home this season and 30-30-9 overall.
The Sabres will return to action on Thursday, hosting the Pittsburgh Penguins for the first of three games in four days. Buffalo then travels to Carolina for a Saturday evening matchup before hosting the St. Louis Blues for a 5 pm puck drop Sunday.
Final: Stars 2, Sabres 0
Shots on Goal: Sabres - 35 | Stars - 27
Sabres Goal Scorers: None :(
Stars Goal Scorers: Roope Hintz (2)
Three Stars of the Game
- Roope Hintz (2 goals)
- Ben Bishop (35 saves)
- Tyler Seguin (1 assist, 4 shots)