The Buffalo Sabres entered tonight’s matchup with the Montreal Canadiens, boasting a 2-0-1 head-to-head record this season. For some reason, this appeared to instill some hope that tonight would be the perfect chance for Buffalo to snap their record 14-game losing streak.
Thankfully for the Sabres, their luck against the Canadiens would continue for at least one more game.
Things started off relatively quick for the Buffalo Sabres in Montreal.
Just 5:21 into the game, Drew Stafford would get the Sabres on the board with his 8th goal of the season.
This goal bumped Stafford to 321 career points, moving him into 24th all-time in franchise history.
Buffalo’s lead would unfortunately be short lived.
Brandon Prust, charging down ice out of the penalty box, received a great pass from David Desharnais and put the puck passed Jhonas Enroth. Prust’s 4th of the year tied things at 1.
Buffalo seemed to be energized by this blown one-goal lead, as they took hold of the period as it progressed.
Matt Moulson, who hadn’t scored in 17 games, would score his 8th goal, at 14:53, to give the Sabres their one goal lead back.
Less than five minutes later, Brian Gionta would score his first goal in Montreal since signing with the Sabres in the offseason, and first since December 13, 2014. This goal would put Buffalo up 3-1 after twenty minutes.
Buffalo would continue controlling the game throughout the second period.
While neither team would score, it was evident to many that the Canadiens were sleep walking through the second period.
The third period would continue the trend of Buffalo controlling play early on.
Things remained the same, until 4:20 into the third period, when David Desharnais scored his 8th goal of the season. This goal appeared to set off internal alarms and wake up the Canadiens.
Following this goal, Buffalo’s bend-but-don’t-break approach to the game was tested.
Montreal peppered Jhonas Enroth with shot after shot, but he would not buckle.
To illustrate the massive difference in third period possession, Montreal recorded 15 shots to Buffalo’s 3.
As the period grew late, the pressure on Enroth increased.
When the final buzzer sounded, the Buffalo Sabres would find themselves with a tally in the win column for the first time in 2015.
This win ends a franchise-record 14 game losing streak, and happens to be the Sabres’ first win since their 4-3 (SO) victory over the New York Islanders on December 27, 2014.
The Buffalo Sabres are on the ice again this Thursday, looking to win back-to-back games, when the St. Louis Blues come to the First Niagara Center.
Puck drops shortly after 7 PM. The game will be broadcast on MSG and can be heard on WGR 550.