Drew Stafford scored the lone Buffalo goal as the Sabres were embarrassed in a 6-1 loss to the New York Rangers at Madison Square Garden on Saturday night.
“We were out of it hardly before it started,” said Ted Nolan. “Some bad penalties. Didn’t give the goalie much support.”
The Rangers came into this game on a hot streak, winning nine of their past 10 games, and it was easy to see why they had been playing so well.
The first period was one to forget for the Sabres. A string of penalties handed the Rangers three consecutive power play opportunities, all of which were cashed in to break the game wide open.
In a span of less than three minutes and 48 seconds, New York found the back of the net four times.
“You cant take bad penalties, our special teams and penalty kill are not getting it done,” Josh Gorges said. It’s not good enough, it’s details.”
Derick Brassard, Chris Kreider, Rick Nash and Dan Boyle all scored in the opening period, resulting in Ted Nolan changing his goaltender.
“It’s devastating, you can’t give a team like that back-to-back-to-back chances,” Drew Stafford said.
Michal Neuvirth received the nod in goal for the second straight night. It’s the first time this season that he has started on consecutive nights, but he only lasted about 12 and a half minutes. While the goals may not have been his fault, Jhonas Enroth was called upon to come in and finish the game.
Neuvirth falls to 1-7 on the road this season, with a 4.44 goals against average and an .872 save percentage.
Enroth ended up stopping 28 of the 30 shots he faced in relief, slowing down the Rangers, but the game was all but over early on.
Carl Hagelin got in on the action early in the second period with his eighth goal of the season.
After falling behind 5-0, the Sabres started to apply heavy pressure and were finally rewarded when Drew Stafford’s wraparound beat Henrik Lundqvist to get Buffalo on the board.
After it appeared that Enroth made a quick left pad save, the play was reviewed and officials determined that the puck did cross the line and Jesper Fast gave the Rangers a 6-1 lead.
The Sabres are off until Tuesday when they continue their four game road trip against the New Jersey Devils. That game is scheduled for 7:00 p.m. and can be seen on MSG.