Frolik's Sabres debut spoiled by losing effort

January 09, 2020 - 11:23 pm

On Thursday night, Michael Frolik played his first game with the Sabres. The Sabres were pretty rusty and spotted St. Louis two first period goals, so Frolik really couldn't get into the period.

The right winger was fast in on the forecheck in his first shift, but the team overall wasn't mentally sharp in the first period they were retreating a lot. As I watched Frolik, I mostly watched him backcheck.

His center Marcus Johansson hustled back to breakup two outnumbered situations.

In the first period Frolik played nine shifts for 6:53 and had one hit and one blocked shot.

Things didn't go much better for Buffalo in the second period. With six minutes left in the period the shots were 11-2 St. Louis.

Frolik wasn't on the ice for David Perron's power play goal, but he was on the kill with Curtis Lazar right before that. I didn't know if they killed penalties together in Calgary, but they did look out of sync.

I think one thing Frolik can help with is getting solid breakouts. He slowed one down in the second period, went across to an open defenseman and the Sabres were on their way down ice.

After 40 minutes Frolik had one shot on goal, it was an off angle shot from the left wing that Jordan Binnington smothered.

Frolik played 15 shifts in the first two periods for 11:01 of work. He had two hits and two blocked shots.

Midway through the third period Conor Sheary caused a turnover setting up Frolik in front on the backhand, but Binnington stopped him.

After the game Frolik said he got more comfortable as the game went on, but there's no excuse for the way he and the team played. The winger ended with 22 shifts and 16:44 of play with two shots, three hits and two blocked shots.

In the end it wasn't a good game for Frolik and it wasn't a bad game. He had just one practice with his new teammates and I thought it showed. He's still a good enough hockey player that he didn't hurt his team in the process.

You can hear Frolik's comments in the locker room following his team debut below.

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