Buffalo (24-11-4) vs. Atlanta (18-16-5)
Derek Roy and the Buffalo Sabres don’t want to make a habit of overcoming three-goal deficits.
So long as the bounces keep going their way, they’re not going to complain too much about it.
A wild bounce off a glass partition led to Roy scoring into an unattended net 4:02 into overtime to cap a 4-3 win over the stunned Atlanta Thrashers on Friday night. It was Buffalo’s second straight win in a game it trailed 3-0, following a 4-3 victory over Pittsburgh on Tuesday.
And this one could be chalked up as much to character as good fortune.
“That was the most wide-open net I’ve gotten in my career,” Roy said. “I got a lucky bounce off the glass, it was a good bounce for us.”
The unlikely goal came on what began as an innocent play when Sabres defenseman Tyler Myers got to the Atlanta blue line and dumped the puck in high along the left boards. Goalie Johan Hedberg anticipated the play, and immediately left his crease to go behind the net in a bid to play the puck.
The puck, however, took a strange carom off the glass and bounced directly into the slot, where Roy swept it into the wide-open net.
“We definitely deserved a better fate,” Hedberg said. “We were the better team. They had the bounces, you can say that.”
The Sabres scored four times in the final 26:53 to win their third straight. Jochen Hecht had two goals and an assist and Tim Connolly had a goal and assist in helping Buffalo end a six-game skid (0-1-5) against Atlanta.
Buffalo became the first team to win consecutive games when trailing by three or more goals since Dallas did it in January 2006 in beating Anaheim 4-3 in a shootout and Detroit 6-3.
*This recap is credited to NHL.com and the associated press.