Sabres look to keep momentum against Red Wings (Oct 24, 2017)

October 24, 2017

BUFFALO, N.Y. -- Little was going right for the Buffalo Sabres in their first year under head coach Phil Housley -- until a shocking comeback win over the Boston Bruins on Saturday.

After losing seven of their first eight games, the Sabres overcame a three-goal deficit to pick up a 5-4 overtime win over the Bruins. Buffalo (2-5-2) will look to carry that momentum into a Tuesday night home game against the Detroit Red Wings.

"I think we need to use this game as an example of what it takes to win a hockey game," Sabres center Jack Eichel said. "It doesn't mean much if you don't come back Tuesday and have a good performance."

Center Ryan O'Reilly scored the game-winner for Buffalo in overtime. It was his third goal of the season after a difficult start to the year.


"It wasn't a great backhand, I just kind of raised it and it sneaked in," O'Reilly said. "It was a nice bounce for us, we haven't had a lot of those lately. Again, we're going to start preparing for the next game. We're still disappointed with our start in the season, and we've got to get better."

Eichel, Evander Kane and Jason Pominville are all tied for the team lead with 11 points. Goalies Robin Lehner (1-3-1, .894 save percentage) and Chad Johnson (1-2-1, .881 save percentage) have yet to find a groove inside the crease for Buffalo.

The Red Wings (4-4-1) are looking in the mirror after their worst effort of the young season, a 4-1 loss to the Vancouver Canucks on Sunday night. Coach Jeff Blashill canceled the team's Monday practice, instead holding a team meeting that featured extensive video work.

"I talked, I showed video of lots of things that aren't good enough in the areas that we've got to be way better," Blashill said, according to the team's website. "It wasn't a discussion meeting. It wasn't a Kumbaya. It was a, 'This is not good enough, these are the areas it's not good enough, we got to be better.'

"I thought that was better than an hour practice where I would have got the message across like I did get it across through my meeting without maybe the physical exertion where we'll need the energy (against Buffalo)."

The Red Wings took the message to heart.

"Sometimes it's good to get a little reality check, a wakeup call," captain Henrik Zetterberg said, according to the team's website. "We have been playing pretty decent hockey, but (Sunday) was unacceptable, and we have to make sure it doesn't happen again. It was a stinker, but we know we can play good hockey if we do it right if we have a little more passion, a little more effort."

Mike Green leads the team with 11 points (one goal, 10 assists). Zetterberg and Dylan Larkin are tied for the second on the team with nine points, and Anthony Mantha has eight. Jimmy Howard (3-2-0) owns a save percentage of .916 in six games.