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Photo courtesy of The AP.

Panthers win 2-1 in shootout



Buffalo, NY (WGR 550)  -- Greetings once again from the Ted Darling Memorial Press Box, where the Buffalo Sabres hit the ice against the Florida Panthers. Hope you have had a chance to thaw out from the winter storm we all experienced earlier in the week that forced the blue and gold to postpone their game against Carolina.

When the Sabres hit the ice there will be a couple new sets of eyes evaluating the team. Earlier today President of Hockey Operations Pat LaFontaine introduced Tim Murray as the new General Manager of the Sabres, and Craig Patrick as a special assistant and advisor to the hockey department. To read more about the historic day, click here.

Feel free to add your thoughts on today's news, while I add my comments as well. Also, for more you can give myself and Brian Koziol a follow on Twitter: @PatWGR and @BrianWGR.

First Period

17:35 - The Panthers have controlled the puck and have jumped out to a 4-0 lead in the shots category. No real good scoring chances yet, but definitely the better of the play.

13:15 - The blue and gold have had just two shots on goal, but they are both quality chances. Florida had 8, but none have put the blue and gold in danger of giving up the game's first goal.  

12:08 - Panthers' captain Ed Jovanovski takes the first minor penalty of the game. It is an interference penalty to give Buffalo the 5-on-4 chance.

9:31 - Two shots on goal for the Sabres, but no scoring on their power play. Florida may have had the best chance after gaining the zone and missing on a point-blank chance.

3:12 - PROGRAMMING NOTE: Be sure to tune into the intermission report on WGR 550 and the Sabres Radio Network. Sabres GM Tim Murray joins Brian Koziol during the first intermission.

End of Period

Goal Summary

BUF: none
FLA: none

Penalty Summary

BUF: 13:23 - John Scott (2 min., unsportsmanlike conduct)
FLA: 7:52 - Ed Jovanovski (2 min., interference). 16:05 - Jimmy Hayes (2 min., interference)

Shots on Goal

BUF - 8, FLA - 13

Second Period

16:22 - More end-to-end action to start the middle stanza, but not a ton in the way of chances. Just two shots on goal and one real scoring chance. Tyler Ennis was denied in tight. He has been night and day better since Ted Nolan took over. I know a player is most responsible for his play, but by the same token, if they are not put in a position to succeed how much do you blame them?

14:45 - SABRES GOAL. Jamie McBain picks up his third goal of the season thanks to a very nice pass through the slot. Steve Ott found the Sabres' defenseman cutting down Broadway and hit him with the pass. McBain made no doubt, wiring a shot past Tim Thomas. 1-0 BUF.

5:11 - Alex Sulzer is in the penalty box for a defensive zone penalty, and it was a lazy one. Hooking was the call, but it could have been for inteference or tripping also.

3:30 - Buffalo shoots itself in the foot by taking a bench minor for too many men. Bad penalty to go down by two men for half a minute.

End of Period

Goal Summary

BUF: 5:13 - Jamie McBain (3) (Steve Ott, Matt D'Agostini)
FLA: none

Penalty Summary

BUF: 14:49 - Alex Sulzer (2 min., hooking). 16:19 - TEAM (2 min., too many men on the ice)
FLA: none

Shots on Goal

BUF - 6 (14), FLA - 12 (25)


Third Period

16:23 - Florida nearly tied the game while John Scott is in the penalty box. However, the shot rang off of the goal post, and no damage was done. It was a legitimate penalty on Scott, as well. He got his stick in between Tom Gilbert's legs and hauled him down.

10:44 - PANTHERS GOAL. You just had the feeling it was coming, and Tom Gilbert throws a rebound chance, it goes off of Brad Boyes and ties this game at one. Alex Sulzer tried to clear the puck, but it went right to Gilbert who helped create the chance. 1-1 tie.

6:17 - Buffalo catches a break when the play is blown dead for an injured player to negate a Florida goal. Dimirty Kulikov was hurt in his own zone, and the play was stopped before Brad Boyes jammed the puck into the net for the go-ahead goal. Still 1-1 late in this stanza.

3:54 - Florida is getting close. They just hit the post for the fourth time in this game! At least two of them have come this period.
 

End of Regulation

Goal Summary

BUF: none
FLA: 9:16 - Brad Boyes (12) (Tom Gilbert, Sean Bergehneim)

Penalty Summary

BUF: 2:19 - John Scott (2 min., tripping)
FLA: none

Shots on Goal

BUF - 7 (21), FLA - 9 (34)

Overtime

1:29 - McBain nearly ended the game after he pinched in from the point. The rear guard got a good shot off, but Thomas made a better save across his crease.

End of Overtime


Shootout

Tyler Ennis (BUF) - no goal
Aleksander Barkov (FLA) - no goal

Matt Moulson (BUF) - no goal
Jonathan Huberdeau (FLA) - no goal

Steve Ott (BUF) - no goal
Brad Boyes (FLA) - GOAL

End of Game

Florida 2, Buffalo 1 FINAL/SO


Final Thoughts

What does Jhonas Enroth have to do to get some goal support from his teammates?! The Panthers deserved to win the game, and in the end they did. Hitting the post four or five times in that final period kept making me think they were the team that would eventually win it. If Johan Larsson would have buried one of his many chances Buffalo would have eeked out a win, but it always goes both ways. Of course the former Sabre Brad Boyes is the one that scores the game-winner in the shootout. Does not mean I still want him here in Buffalo, but it always seems to go that way. Next up for the blue and gold is a date with the Washington Capitals on the Beltway. The Sabres and Capitals face-off after three o'clock in DC on Sunday afternoon. Catch all of the action, including pregame coverage starting at 2 p.m. on the flagship home of the Sabres Radio Network - WGR Sports Radio 550.


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