The Sabres battled back against the Los Angeles Kings and won in dramatic fashion. Ryan O’Reilly netted an overtime goal to give the Sabres a 2-1 win on Saturday night at the First Niagara Center. It was O’Reilly’s 100th goal of his career and it couldn’t have come at a better time.
Winners of their previous six games, the Kings came into the game as a heavy favorite, even on the road. A Sabres team that came in on a three game losing streak put up a good fight, but it was nothing unusual.
The Sabres are now 10-1 against the Kings in the past 11 meetings at the First Niagara Center, and they managed to slow down the high-powered Los Angeles team once again.
Former Sabre Jhonas Enroth received the start in goal for the Kings, and made several big stops. Linus Ullmark was just as good at the other end, stopping point blanks shots on multiple occasions.
The Sabres were creating pressure early on and tested Enroth early, but it was the Kings who struck first. Anze Kopitar fed Marion Gaborik a one-timer on a 2-on-1 rush, and he gave Los Angeles a 1-0 lead on the team’s first shot of the game.
The Sabres didn’t take long to respond. After Jordan Nolan (former head coach Ted Nolan’s son) took a penalty, Jamie McGinn tied things up just 13 seconds into the power play.
The Kings came into the game with a league-leading 33 shots per game, but the Sabres led in shots, 12-3, after the opening period. Shots ended up, 31-21, in favor of Buffalo.
The Sabres appeared to take a 2-1 lead earlier in the game as Jake McCabe roofed a shot over Enroth to give the Sabres a 2-1 lead late in the second period. However, the Los Angeles Kings challenged that Buffalo Sabres were offsides on the play, and the call was overturned.
Linesman Steve Miller was honored as he officiated his 1,000th NHL game.
The Sabres are scheduled to take the road and face the Detroit Red Wings on Monday at 7:30 p.m. The teams have met once already, a game in which saw the Sabres fall in a shootout. Following that game, Buffalo will have a three game homestand, facing New Jersey, Anaheim and Chicago.