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Game Recap

Sabres back Lehner in win over Flyers

Recap

Robin Lehner has been locked in lately, and the Sabres finally backed him up in a 4-2 victory over the Philadelphia Flyers on Friday night at the KeyBank Center.

While on the power play with three minutes remaining, the Flyers pulled Brian Elliott for a chance at a 6-on-4, and Michael Raffl cut the deficit in half with 2:10 to go.

The net was emptied again as Philadelphia was in search of the tying goal, but Jack Eichel all but sealed the victory with an empty-net goal with just over a minute remaining.

Again, Elliott was pulled after the ensuing faceoff, and the Flyers struck again. Shayne Gostisbehere ripped a one-timer past Lehner to bring the Flyers within a goal with 30 seconds left.

Once more, the Flyers elected for the extra attacker, but this time Eichel finally got the last laugh as he buried another empty-net goal in the final second.

For much of the game, Lehner was in a goaltending duel with Elliott as both teams were scoreless after 40 minutes. Both goaltenders came up with tremendous saves throughout the night, and Lehner’s strong effort didn’t go unnoticed by his teammates.

“He’s been our best player and given us a chance to win when we’re not scoring goals. Again tonight, he was outstanding.” – Ryan O’Reilly

“He’s been keeping us in a lot of games and he did a good job handling the puck. It’s good to see him get a win and rewarded for his effort.” – Eichel

O’Reilly opened the scoring after he threw the puck toward the net from below the goal line and somehow got it to bank off Elliott for his ninth of the season.

“It was a lucky bounce. I thought I’d try to surprise him with one and it was good momentum for us.” – O’Reilly

Shortly after, the Sabres got into some penalty trouble with Sam Reinhart and Jake McCabe taking two-minute minors. However, Buffalo continued its’ recent success while shorthanded, killing off a two-man advantage that lasted 45 seconds. 

The Sabres added an insurance goal after Josh Gorges let a shot go from the point that was deflected in by Evander Kane, who recorded his 15th goal.

The Sabres have a challenging road ahead with each of the next seven games away from KeyBank Center, starting with Saturday’s game vs. the Carolina Hurricanes. Six are road games and one is the Winter Classic, where Buffalo will be considered the home team against the New York Rangers.

Scoring

Penalties

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NHL Standings

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Atlantic Division Leaders:
P8262-16-4128
X8249-24-9107
X8246-28-8100
Metropolitan Division Leaders:
Y8248-26-8104
X8248-27-7103
X8244-26-12100
Wild Card leaders:
X8246-29-799
X8247-31-498
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8244-30-896
8236-32-1486
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8232-36-1478
8233-39-1076
8232-40-1074
8231-41-1072
8229-47-664
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Central Division Leaders:
Y8247-29-6100
X8247-30-599
X8245-28-999
Pacific Division Leaders:
Z8250-25-7107
X8246-27-9101
X8243-32-793
Wild Card leaders:
X8243-32-793
X8238-30-1490
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8239-35-886
8236-34-1284
8237-36-983
8235-36-1181
8235-37-1080
8235-38-979
8231-42-971