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Struggling Sabres Extend Losing Streak to Five

An effort was made, but it wasn’t enough to overcome the Caps.

Buffalo Sabres v Washington Capitals Photo by John McCreary/NHLI via Getty Images

Score: BUF 3 | WSH 5

Shots: Sabres 28 | Capitals 30

Buffalo Sabres Goals: Cody Eakin (2), Anders Bjork (2), Colin Miller (1)

Washington Capitals Goals: Tom Wilson (2,3), Connor McMichael (2), Alex Ovechkin (11), John Carlson (3)

Minus 1: What Is A Power Play?

The Sabres looked anything but powerful on their power plays on Monday night. Their first advantage of the night, midway through the first period, was fruitless; they didn’t even manage to record one shot on goal. The same is true of their second opportunity, which came later in the second period. Finally, on their third power play of the night, the team managed to record three shots, but this is inexcusable.

Overall, they haven’t been bad on the power play this season - at 27.6 percent, they’re fifth in the NHL as of writing - but Monday night’s effort was pitiful.

Plus 1: Tokarski in Net

The score of Monday’s game isn’t at all a reflection of the play of Dustin Tokarski. Four of the five Capitals goals came on deflections that he simply could do nothing about, and overall, he played pretty well. With Craig Anderson still out, Tokarski has been asked to step into an undoubtedly bigger role here in Buffalo and he seems to be up for the challenge - even if the team in front of him isn’t.

Minus 1: Five Losses in a Row

Buffalo extended its league-leading losing streak to five games, a very different story than the one being told about the team just a few short weeks ago. Overall, they’ve lost seven of their last nine games dating back to October 22. It’s been an unfortunate and rapid decline for a squad that started the season 3-0.

Final Thoughts

First & foremost, can I replay Miller’s goal over and over in my head? What a great shot.

The Sabres just looked flat. They couldn’t finish plays and couldn’t maintain possession. More than once, the Capitals were so dominant that I assumed they were on the power play when - spoiler alert - they weren’t.

Christian Wolanin finally made his debut for Buffalo, swapping in for Will Butcher. He played 8:18, all even-strength, and was a minus-2.

Next up: a pair of home games for the Sabres, who host Edmonton and Connor McDavid Friday before the Toronto Maple Leafs come to town Saturday.