The Sabres didn’t have an answer early on with Boston’s tight checking and steady pressure. Buffalo felt the absence of Jack Eichel on the offensive side and had some sloppy moments on defense as well.
“We gave up to many grade A chances. I think as a five man unit we didn’t defend very well tonight.” – Zach Bogosian
After a shaky start, Linus Ullmark put together a strong performance and kept the Sabres in the game coming up with 39 saves on 41 shots.
The first period was evenly played with the Bruins out shooting the Sabres by a 13-10 margin. The only goal came at the 10:10 mark when the Bruins applied relentless pressure down low. The swarming Bruins caused Rasmus Dahlin to give away a loose puck, and Chris Wagner made them pay with a nice wrist shot over the glove of Ullmark.
For the most part, Boston controlled the second period outshooting the Sabres, 15-10, and grabbing the only goal of the period. Tuukka Rask cleared the puck up the ice where David Backes picked it up near the center line creating a two-on-one break. Backes and Brad Marchand skated into the Sabres zone and Backes placed a wrist shot into the top right corner of the net giving the Bruins a 2-0 lead.
Buffalo’s only marker came late in the third when Rasmus Ristolainen picked up the puck at center ice. Ristolainen wiggled his way through the Boston zone and wristed a shot over the glove of Rask to spoil his bid for a shutout.
The next game for the Sabres takes place on Tuesday at 7 p.m. when the New Jersey Devils come to town.