Sabres at Canadiens Recap: Vanek, Miller Steal A Win From Montreal Again
The Sabres visited Montreal for the second time in a week, and for the second time, they escaped with a win despite being massively out-shot and out-possessed.
It may not have been pretty, and I sure don't want to see too much of it the rest of the year, but the Sabres left Montreal yesterday with two points, and in the end, that's all that matters.
Buffalo was outshot 39-18, and if you take into account the missed and blocked shots, that number climbs to 85-31. Ryan Miller loomed large in a nice comeback game, only allowing a third period goal to Michael Ryder that was the result of poor defensive coverage. Miller had been struggling coming in to last night's contest, seeing his GAA rise to almost 3.5 per game in his the previous eight games. If the Sabres are going to make any kind of run, it will start with Miller returning to form.
Along with Miller's heroics, Thomas Vanek provided the offense for Buffalo, with two perfectly Vanek goals: one, a tip-in off of a Christian Ehrhoff slapper, the other, a gorgeous streaking backhand that fooled Price and found twine.
The Sabres now sit in tenth place, just two points behind eighth place Carolina, after beating Montreal twice in a week. Habs fans are, shall we say, upset about the way those two games have played out, and they should be. Buffalo was lucky to escape with four points in these games, and they won't win many more if they can't start to improve their shot differential and puck possession numbers.
Still, regardless of how they earned them, those four points put the Sabres right back in the thick of the playoff race with just over a month to go.