Score: Panthers 6 | Sabres 1
Shots: FLA 31 | BUF 29
Buffalo Sabres Goals: John Hayden (2)
Florida Panthers Goals: Brandon Montour (6), Noel Acciari (1), Anthony Duclair (22-PP), Carter Verhaeghe (17), Patric Hornqvist (9), Aleksander Barkov (26-PP)
Plus-1: RJ on the Call
Though there is likely little motivation to continue watching the Sabres play the rest of this season, perhaps Rick Jeanneret remains the one and only reason. After tonight, he has just eight more games on the mic after 51 years as the unforgettable voice of the franchise. Feel free to sound off in the comments with your favorite RJ memory.
Tweet of the game: “Whenever I’m feeling drained and unmotivated, I pull up old @BuffaloSabres clips just to hear RJ. #ThankYouRJ to get me fired up. I’ll never forget the man who made me fall in love with hockey.” - @RyanC153
Minus-1: Florida is Really, Really Good
The last time these two teams met was December 2nd, when Buffalo blew a 3-0 lead and lost 7-4. Between that game and tonight’s first two periods, the Sabres have been outscored by Florida 12-1 and are 0-7 on the power play versus Florida this season. Are the Panthers good? Yes, they are very very good, but they look even better up against the Sabres. Until the lone goal by Hayden, Buffalo had not scored in 114 minutes and 48 seconds.
In each of their last eight games, Florida has scored three or more goals. What is more impressive is that in 24 games, they have scored five or more goals. In all honesty, they made the Sabres look like a high school club tonight.
Three Stars of the Game
1. Aleksander Barkov - 1G, 2A
2. Brandon Montour - 1G, 1A
3. Mason Marchment - 3A
While tonight’s matchup welcomed the return (or revenge) of Sam Reinhart and Brandon Montour, Buffalo has another tough opponent coming up on Thursday when they play Vegas at home. It will be the first time Jack Eichel is in Buffalo since his trade in the fall. Puck drop is at 7:00 PM on ESPN+.