Sabres almost rally, but can’t finish in Detroit


The Buffalo Sabres were in Detroit tonight, in the back end of their back-to-back set, to take on the Wild Card-leading Red Wings.

Buffalo tried to get off to a quick start, but unfortunately Detroit had different plans. The Red Wings controlled the offensive pace early, which led to them getting on the board early.

At 5:47 of the first period, a scrum in front of Matt Hackett resulted in Darren Helm getting a wide open look at the net. Helm was not mistaken, and would score his 11th of the year, putting Detroit up 1-0.

The Red Wings continued to dominate the offensive side of the game, after John Scott took a high sticking penalty late in the first period.

Detroit would take advantage of the man advantage. A point shot from Danny DeKeyser was deflected by Tomas Jurco, and cleanly beat Matt Hackett. This goal, Jurco’s 7th of the season, put the Red Wings up 2-0 at 14:12.

The offensive domination of Detroit would continue, when a little over a minute later, a rebound was deposited by Daniel Alfredsson. Detroit’s 3rd goal of the game goes in the books as Alfredsson’s 18th of the season, at 15:28.

Buffalo came out for the second period, and looked less than energized throughout the first half of the period.

It would take a mid-period power play for the Sabres to get on the right track.

At 12:28 of the second, Jamie McBain would rocket a shot from the faceoff dot, to the right of Jimmy Howard, for a goal. This was the Sabres’ first goal of the game and McBain’s 5th of the season.

While the Sabres offensive chances would slightly increase following their first goal, Buffalo ended the second period with only one goal.

Buffalo and Detroit began the third period, playing at a very gracious pace. 

The Sabres would take advantage of an offensive opportunity first, as a Johan Larsson faceoff win was dished to Nicolas Deslauriers, who was ready and waiting.

Deslauriers would turn and fire the puck from point blank range, bringing the Sabres to within one goal. Buffalo’s second goal of the game, at 6:40, was the first of Nicolas Deslauriers’ NHL career. The point tallied was also the first point of Deslauriers’ NHL career.

Although Buffalo brought the lead to within one, they would not be able to seal the deal and would fall to Detroit, 3-2. 

With this loss, the Sabres fall to 20-47-9 on the season with 51 points.

Buffalo is in action again this Sunday night against the Philadelphia Flyers, in Philadelphia. Puck drops for that game shortly after 7:30 PM, on NBCSN.


Ryan Wolfe
Administrator/Writer at Sabres Hockey Central.

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