Cory Conacher is now one of only three players to score a goal for the Buffalo Sabres in the past eight games. On Thursday, Conacher scored his first two goals as a member of the Sabres in a 3-1 win over the Edmonton Oilers at the Rexall Place. This win for the Sabres snapped a season long seven-game losing streak.
Conacher scored his first goal on a deflection on the powerplay to tie the game 1-1. John Scott set up in from of Oliers’ goaltender Ben Scrivens to provide a screen for Conacher’s deflection off of Jamie McBain’s shot. Conacher got his second goal of the night off of a Cody Hodgson shot to give Buffalo a 2-1 lead just 1:09 into the third period. Conacher also added a secondary assist on Drew Stafford’s goal to give the Sabres a 3-1 lead.
Conacher did more than just contribute offensively. Conacher played with a chip on his shoulder and played a strong physical game. Conacher was involved in a dust up early in the game with Ben Scrivens that set the tone for his night. Conacher also had three blocked shots on the night to help Matt Hackett and the Sabres defense.
Conacher was demoted to the second line by Sabres’ interim coach Ted Nolan before Thursday’s game. Skating on a line with Hodgson and Torrey Mitchell, Conacher registered five shots and was a plus-2 in 14:12 of total ice-time.
Drew Stafford continues to be red-hot for the Sabres. Stafford scored his 15th goal of the season 4:44 into the third period. Stafford also has five goals in his last seven games. For Stafford, he tied Conacher with five shots, had two hits, and was a plus-1 in 22:19 of total ice-time. Stafford led all Sabres players in total ice-time for the night.
Matt Hackett got his first win as a member of the Buffalo Sabres. After giving up an early goal to Taylor Hall, Hackett shut the door stopping 35 Oiler shots to help Buffalo get the victory. Hackett may get another chance to start for the Sabres on Sunday night if Michal Neuvirth is not ready to come back form injury.
The Sabres will travel next to British Columbia for a Sunday match up with the Vancouver Canucks. Opening faceoff is scheduled for 8 p.m. The game will be broadcasted on MSG Network and WGR 550 AM.