Score: Sabres 2 | Bruins 6
Shots: BUF 19 | BOS 43
Sabres Goals: Riley Sheahan (4), Arttu Ruotsalainen (5)
Bruins Goals: Craig Smith (11, 12, 13), Sean Kuraly (3), Patrice Bergeron (19), Nick Ritchie (13)
Observation 1 | An Unfortunate Injury
With just four games remaining in the 2020-21 regular season, fans of the Buffalo Sabres were intrigued to see goaltender Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen get as much NHL action as possible. That plan may be thwarted as the 22-year-old exited this afternoon’s contest after suffering what looked to be a lower-body injury.
In the four games Luukkonen has appeared in this year, he has posted a record of 1-3-0 and holds a save-percentage of .906. We’ll see if this is something that keeps him sidelined for the rest of the year, but it’s a disappointing blow for a Buffalo team that is using this “lost season” as a chance to evaluate some of their younger assets.
Observation 2 | Running out of Granato Magic?
After helping the Sabres bust a league-record 18-game losing streak, Don Granato has received a lot of praise. He’s taken a very injured, under-talented group and, for the most part, has them playing watchable hockey.
After posting a 5-4-2 record to start the month of April, the Sabres have lost five of their last six contests. That sort of regression was to be expected. Granato’s club is battered and thin, but perhaps the fanfare will cool a bit on a coach who many have advocated to assume the permanent role for next season.
Observation 3 | Boston on a Tear
The Boston Bruins are doing everything they can to lock up the East Division, and the Sabres have been simply overwhelmed by their up-tempo play. Over the last two games, the Bruins have out-shot Buffalo 83-50 while out-scoring them 11-4.
Fortunately, this is the last time this season where the Sabres will have to square-off with the class of the East Division. They’ll close out the year with two contests against the New York Islanders and Pittsburgh Penguins, respectively.
Buffalo heads home Monday for their final two games at KeyBank Center. Puck drop is set for 7:00PM.