Score: Sabres 3 | Capitals 4 (SO)
Shots: BUF - 27 | PHI - 32
Sabres Goals: Eric Staal (1), Dylan Cozens (1), Riley Sheahan (1)
Capitals Goals: Nicklas Backstrom (3), Nic Dowd (2), Jakub Vrana (3)
Plus 1 | Cozens and Staal Net Their Firsts
Dylan Cozens’ transition to the NHL has been a smooth one, and tonight his impressive play finally paid off. On a beautiful play in the neutral zone, Cozens poked the puck away from the Capitals player and walked in on a two on one in the offense zone. Smartly ripping a shot, he picked the top corner on a beauty of a first career goal.
Eric Staal, on the other hand, has plenty of NHL goals, but netted his first in a Sabres uniform tonight. After a crafty steal by Victor Olofsson on Zdeno Chara behind the net, Staal was left alone in front to tap in Olofsson’s slot pass into the yawning cage.
Minus 1 | Thompson Still Fails To Impress
Another unimpressive game from Tage Thompson results in the forward getting benched in crunch time in the 3rd period. Slotted with Olofsson and Staal for the majority of the game, Thompson now has failed to mesh on three different lines in the young season.
At this point, you’d think Ralph Krueger will have to turn to other options in attempt to round out the lineup. Whether that’s another game for Rasmus Asplund, or a debut for Casey Mittelstadt, Thompson is not leaving the coach much of a choice at this point.
Minus 1 | Sabres Lose To A Depleted Team
With Alex Ovechkin, Evgeny Kuznetsov, Dmitry Orlov, and Ilya Samsonov all missing from the Capitals lineup, the Sabres needed to capitalize on a depleted team. Despite playing a fairly good game, they were still unable to find the win column against Washington.
Plus 1 | Sabres Come Away With A Point
The key to the in-division setup of the schedule this season is manufacturing points in any way possible. By forcing a shootout, the Sabres make sure to lock up a crucial early-season point in a tight game.
Every point will matter down the stretch, and if the Sabres find themselves in it, turning a two-point game into a three-point game will end up being valuable.