Gamenight: Golden Knights 3 - Sabres 1

October 17, 2017 - 10:44 pm

Joe DiBiase reporting

The Buffalo Sabres, coming off a 3-1 win over the Anaheim Ducks, make their first ever trip to play the Vegas Golden Knights. Vegas has been a great story to start the season, they're 4-1, with just one loss coming to the Detroit Red Wings. No Marc-Andre Fleury for the Knights, so Malcolm Subban gets another start in net. Chad Johnson gets his second straight start for the Sabres.

No Jacob Josefson in the lineup for Buffalo, Zemgus Girgensons replaces him as the 4th line center, and Kyle Okposo takes his spot in the lineup.

The Sabres got on the board first with a powerplay goal by Ryan O'Reilly. Jason Pominville drew the penalty on David Perron, who obstructed Pominville from getting to the puck in the corner. O'Reilly made him pay, with a wrist shot from the top of the circle, that beat Subban on the blocker side. Matt Moulson supplied the screen in front.

The Golden Knights would get a chance to respond quickly. Just over a minute later, Benoit Pouliot took a penalty, giving Vegas the man advantage. They would put on lots of pressure for almost the entirety of the powerplay, but couldn't beat Chad Johnson. Zemgus Girgensons blocked a shot with his lower leg, he had difficulty getting to his feet and limped to the bench.

Immediatley afterwards, the Sabres created pressure with a speedy line of Jack Eichel, Justin Bailey, and Benoit Pouliot. Eichel would draw a holding penalty on Vegas center Cody Eakin. The Sabres would get some good chances from their 2nd unit, but were not able to capitalize.

The Golden Knights would tie the game with just over five minutes to go in the first. A turnover at center ice by Rasmus Ristolainen led to a 2 on 1. Reilly Smith got the pass through to Oscar Lindberg who buried the puck in the back of the net to tie the game at 1.

Phil Housley's system showed it's true colors on a shift with Eichel's line, and Ristolainen and Scandella on defense. The Sabres possessed the puck for about a minute straight, thanks in part to Marco Scandella pinching, and then remaining down low to forecheck and creat a turnover to continue the pressure. Under previous coaches, Scandella may have been skating back to the blue line allowing Vegas to get the puck out.

Vegas' second goal of the night was not good positioning by the Buffalo defensemen. Alex Tuch stood right in front of Chad Johnson, tipping a shot past him to take the lead. No Sabre was near Tuch to tie up his stick, let alone force him from Johnson's crease.

The next few minutes were controlled by the Golden Knights. Reilly Smith hit the crossbar with a near perfect wrist shot, and just after Rasmus Ristolainen took a slashing penalty. The Sabres would kill off the penalty, but didn't learn their lesson. The Sabres took two more penalties before the end of the period. Reilly Smith scored on the later of the two, to make the game 3-1.

Game Summary

Goal Summary:

First Period:

BUF: 6:24 - Ryan O'Reilly (1) PP (Evander Kane)
VGK: 14:15 - Oscar Lindberg (3) (Reilly Smith, William Karlsson)

Second Period:

BUF: None
VGK: 6:40 - Alex Tuch (2) (Brendan Leipsic, Deryk Engelland). 18:37 Reilly Smith (1) (Colin Miller, Brad Hunt)

Third Period:



Penalty Summary:

First Period:

BUF: 7:11 - Benoit Pouliot (2 min., slashing)
VGK: 5:50 - David Perron (2 min., interference). 9:40 - Cody Eakin (2 min., holding)

Second Period:

BUF: 2:48 - Jack Eichel (2 min., holding). 9:35 - Rasmus Ristolainen (2 min., slashing). 13:56 - Jason Pominville (2 min., faceoff violation). 17:27 - Marco Scandella (2 min., slashing)
VGK: None

Third Period:


Shots on Goal:

BUF - 15 ; VGK - 20

Power Play Summary:

BUF: 1 for 2 (50%)
VGK: 1 for 5 (20%)



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