Result: Sabers 1, Senators 3
Shots: Buffalo 34, Ottawa 33
buffalo saber Goals: Zemgus Girgensons (4)
Ottawa Senators Goals: Tim Stützle (13, 14) Jacob Lucchini (1)
Plus 1/Minus 1: Different contributors
Nice to see Zemgus Girgensons on Sunday night with his fourth of the season on the board. Girgensons had two points in the win against the Red Wings last week but hasn’t scored since Nov. 5. Mattias Samuelsson scored his second point of the season with an assist on a great pass, while Ilya Lyubushkin also had an assist.
It’s good to see some other parts of the lineup stepping up and contributing offensively, the positives here. The downside is that the players you would expect this offensive from couldn’t get onto the board. Thompson had two shots on goal and four penalties and was pretty hard on himself in his post-game comments. Skinner’s personal 10-game scoring streak was coming to an end. Cozens also had two shots.
Plus 1: Andy plays big on the net
A rested Craig Anderson is the best Craig Anderson. In his first game since December 17, Anderson made 30 saves against his former team, thanks in part to the holiday and snowstorm-extended break and in part to Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen’s outstanding performance.
Unfortunately, the Sabers looked tired for most of the game and didn’t really seem to pick up any pace until the final 10 minutes of the game. Both Buffalo and Ottawa played their third game in four days, and for Buffalo that showed in missed passes, a rough 5-on-3 and an inability to untie Anton Forsberg.
commentary of the game
“I used to love watching Eichel run the puck, he had so much power and the ability to blow past players.
Now I love watching Dahlin. He’s such a sleek and graceful skater.
I love it!”
As Tage Thompson said in his post-game comments, this game requires some short-term memory. The month of January is packed for the Sabers and there is no time to reflect on this loss. The Sabers are off tomorrow and will return to action Tuesday in Washington. Her next scheduled day off will then be the 11th. With 15 games in 28 days this month, rest will be a crucial part of managing her workload.
Aside from that, a lot of people on Twitter talked about how it feels like the Sabers are giving up a lot of early career goals, not just this season but in the past. At one point a few years ago, I definitely agreed with that opinion. On the other hand, if you don’t follow other teams as closely, you may not be as aware of how many first career goals they allow, making it easy to feel like the team you’re watching is allowing a lot.
According to MoreHockeyStats.com, the Sabers have now conceded three first NHL career goals this season — most of them in the NHL. In addition to Lucchini, Boston’s Jakub Zboril and Arizona’s Nicklaus Perbix also scored their first career goals of the season against the Sabers on Sunday night. Over the past two seasons, the Sabers have conceded six career first NHL goals, which were equalized by the Minnesota Wild. So – no, you’re not imagining it.
The next challenge for the Sabers is a matchup against Alex Ovechkin and the Washington Capitals on Tuesday.