As a huge Sabres fan, I was pretty pumped for this season to start off tonight and I have high hopes for this season. Now I’m realistic here, I don’t see us making the playoffs but we should be a pretty competitive team this season that stays in games and are fun to watch from Game 1 to Game 82. I expect the best season we’ve had since 2011 and although we’ll ultimately fall short of making the playoffs, we’ll make strides with a new young core that helps us get more and more primed for success in the future.
Tonight the season started at home against the Ottawa Senators with a 4-1 win at home in a solid first game of the year!
The Sabres got off to a bit of a slow start going down 1-0 in the first period on a goal from Sens captain Brady Tkachuk 10:16 into the game, but they didn’t look back as that was the only goal that the oldest player in the NHL, Craig Anderson let in. The Sabres were outshot 14-9 and out hit 8-4 but played a decent and physical first period. 4:31 into the second period, the Sabres tied the game with their first goal of the season on JJ Peterka’s first NHL goal of his career. Rasmus Dahlin got in front of the net and tapped in the go ahead goal 7:15 into the period and Buffalo never looked back. Later in the second period, the Sabres had a huge penalty kill, burning off an Ottawa 5 on 3 and even getting a few nice shorthanded looks. The Sabres outshot the Sens 15-11 in the second period. After a mostly scoreless third period with both teams getting a lot of solid chances, Victor Olofsson iced off the game, scoring on the empty net with 42 seconds left after a fantastic save by Craig Anderson and then 17 seconds later he added another one for good measure.
Both teams ended the game tied in shots at 36 per team but we won on what actually matters…goals.
FINAL: Sabres 4, Senators 1
Solid win for the boys to start the season. Let’s build on this and keep on building the core of this team for the future. I really think we’ll continue to match up and play solid hockey against the mid tier and low tier teams in this league while likely struggling against the playoff teams. A solid place to be in for a team that’s still building for the future.
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