Sabres fall to Devils

Kyle Palmieri factored into three of the Devils’ four goals and Cory Schneider made 34 saves as the New Jersey Devils beat the Buffalo Sabres, 4-1, on Sunday night at the Prudential Center. 

Palmieri effectively ended any thought of a Buffalo comeback with a back-breaking 3rd-period goal at the 14:09 mark, with a beautiful shot from inside the left face-off dot that banked off the post after a neutral-zone flip pass from Travis Zajac. Joey Anderson sealed the deal with a short-handed empty-net goal less than three minutes later.

The win gives New Jersey consecutive wins for the first time since mid-January, and the first since returning home from a three-game Western Conference swing.

For Buffalo, it’s their second consecutive loss, that drops their road record to 11-14-3 on the season, and pushes them further away from a long-hoped-for playoff run.

It seemed as though it was going to be a very high-energy affair as prior to the game Zach Bogosian and Kurtis Gabriel got into a heated word/stick exchange that promised to continue as the game progressed. Despite a nice hit by Bogosian against Foster in the third period, there was very little in the way of emotion shown by either team as a very lackluster game droned into the third period with the Devils holding onto a 2-1 lead.

New Jersey collected a goal from Miles Wood off of a 2-on-1 with Palmieri after Jack Eichel looked to be a bit shaken up behind the play. Wood actually deflected the puck in off of both of his skates legally. That goal was shortly followed by a power-play marker by Jesper Bratt that rang off of the pipe, and into the bottom of the net to augment the Devils lead by two.

Sam Reinhart picked up the only goal from Buffalo on an excellent feed from Zach Bogosian across the width of the offensive zone, after Eichel retrieved the face-off win, and cut New Jersey’s lead in half before the end of the second. That was all the offense Buffalo was to muster tonight.

Schneider, though the stat sheet will tell you he stopped 34 shots, seemed rarely tested with any high-danger chances. However, for the recently struggling net-minder, he won his second consecutive game and bettered his record against the Sabres to 9-3-3.

Carter Hutton made 20 saves on only 23 shots, most of the mundane variety, as the Sabres defense continued its improved play over the past few weeks.

On the plus side, Casey Mittelstadt returned from injury and skated well on the second line for Buffalo and no obvious injuries occurred for the Sabres.

Up next for the Blue and Gold, they’ll try to break this losing streak against the Florida Panthers in Sunrise, Florida on Tuesday night. Puck-drop is scheduled for 7:00 pm.


Craig Schutts
Craig Schutts
Millersville Alumni; Life-long Buffalo sports fan; Part-time writer and podcaster until they throw me out!
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