Score: Sabres 0 | Penguins 1
Shots: BUF 29 | PIT 23
Sabres Goals: None
Penguins Goals: Jeff Carter
Plus 1 | A Goaltending Battle
All four goaltenders who were dressed for Saturday afternoon’s game were undrafted, which is certainly a rare feat in the NHL. Combined, the four netminders - Michael Houser & Stefanos Lekkos on the Buffalo side, Maxime Lagace & Alex D’Orio on the Pittsburgh side - had just 20 games of NHL experience coming into the game. Just an interesting little tidbit. Although it ended in a loss for the Sabres and Lagace’s first NHL shutout in his Penguins debut, both goaltenders had strong performances & Houser saved 22 of 23 shots. He ended up being a nice surprise in a pinch for Buffalo, and while it’s unclear right now where he’ll be next season - or if he’ll even be in the organization - it was definitely a small highlight of the end of this season.
Minus 1 | A Strong Start, But Not a Finish
The Sabres actually got off to a good start on Saturday afternoon. They held the Penguins to just three shots on goal in the first period and tallied 11 of their own in the opening twenty minutes. It was much of the same in the second period, with Buffalo posting 13 shots and Pittsburgh just six (albeit one goal.) Unfortunately, things fell apart a bit in the third period as Buffalo recorded just five shots on goal to Pittsburgh’s 14 and were unable to find the tying goal.
Well, that’s all, folks. What a season it was for the Sabres, who finish at the very bottom of the NHL with a 15-34-7 record and 37 points. Sam Reinhart hit 40 points with a great run as of late; Buffalo used six goaltenders over the course of the season; the team faced injury after injury, COVID and more. Dylan Cozens’ rookie season ended with his notching 13 points. And now? Well, now we gear up for what should be an interesting offseason. There’s a lot of work to be done in the upcoming months within this organization in the hopes that they can start off next season on a better foot.