The Sabres lost to the Senators 2-1 in a shootout Tuesday night. Due to poor weather in Ottawa there were probably only 7,000 fans actually at the game compared to the paid attendance of 15,893.
After two straight wins, Buffalo engaged Ottawa in what could be described as a pretty entertaining goaltender battle with both netminders making fantastic saves throughout.
The Sabres came out with energy and 2:27 in Chris Neil and Nic Deslauriers dropped the gloves in a heated battle to set the tempo for both sides.
Buffalo struck first with Matt Moulson ending his 45 game scoreless drought going backhand on Anderson after Eichel made a gorgeous behind the back pass to Moulson in front. He threw his arms in the air to celebrate.
Ottawa answered though a minute and nine seconds later with rookie Ryan Dzingel getting his first goal ever during a scramble to the right of Lehner who couldn’t find the puck down low. Neither team could convert on the powerplay though with the first ending a 1-1. Buffalo outshot Ottawa 13 to 8. Rasmus Ristolianen thought he scored way out from the left blueline, but it was ruled no goal with the puck just looking like it may have crossed line for offsides. Byslma may have wanted to consider a challenge there because the video replay may have shown otherwise.
The second period saw Buffalo outshoot Ottawa 18 to 9, but Craig Anderson who finished with 38 saves, stopped everything that came his way. Justin Bailey had a nice opportunity off a Moulson feed that Anderson was just quick enough to stop.
To his credit Robin Lehner who stopped 25 of 26 shots, made some nice saves on the Senators powerplay including one on Curtis Lazar at point blank range to keep the game even at 1-1.
One interesting stat after the first two periods was that 17 of the Sabres 31 shots were actually by their defense.
Robin Lehner made a great save on Erik Karlsson in front to keep things even in the third period. The rest of the period Ottawa controlled the better of the play and winning the shot total 7 to 4 in a quieter period compared to the first two. Ottawa also dominated the faceoff battles 36 to 21 and outhit Buffalo 29 to 20.
In overtime, the Sabres had a potential scoring chance with Sam Reinhart getting a nice break into the Ottawa end with Eichel, only for it to turn into a 2-on-1 for Ottawa with Lehner making a great glove save on Erik Karlsson. Eichel got stoned on the breakaway late in the overtime by Anderson to keep things at one apiece.
In the shootout, Ottawa was able to beat Lehner twice with Bobby Ryan and Kyle Turris both scoring, while the Sabres failed to score on their two attempts.
The Sabres return to action Friday at 7:00 p.m. in Columbus.