Coming off a very entertaining 5-3 win in Nashville on Saturday night, the Sabres returned home today for a matinee divisional matchup against the Florida Panthers and fell 4-1.
The Sabres started slow once again with pretty lousy play to start the period as the Panthers were all over us controlling the start of the game. Former Sabre Brandon Montour tipped in the puck with chaos in front of the net on a complete defensive breakdown for the Sabres to put the Panthers up 1-0 just 4:01 into the game. Solid second half of the first period for the Sabres, who generated a ton of scoring chances and held possession in the offensive zone well but we still weren’t able to score
We were outshot 14-8 in the first period and outplayed by an expected goal rate of 1.16-0.68.
Sam Bennett scored the second goal of the game for the Panthers 8:04 into the second period on another lousy defensive breakdown for the Sabres where three Sabres got sunken to the boards and Bennett was able to get right in the slot and put it past UPL. We played like shit the entire second period
It didn’t take long for the Panthers to many it 3-0, and on a two on one just 34 seconds into the third period, former Sabre Sam Reinhart had a quick pass to Anton Lundell, who fired the one timer past Luukkonen. With 8:33 left in the third, Alex Tuch scored the Sabres first goal of the game on a nice screened shot from a weird angle, finally putting the Sabres on the board to make it 3-1. With 1:38 to go, Florida iced off the game with Carter Verhaeghe gunning the puck into the empty net. The Sabres did play pretty well in the third period but still couldn’t score.
Final: Sabres 1, Panthers 4
Pretty lousy game for the Sabres. We didn’t have a chance to win this one with the way we played, making it four straight losses at home. We got outshot 34-29 and got outplayed by an expected goal rate of 3.78-2.35. When the first line doesn’t score (Tuch did tonight), the rest of the team hasn’t been able to get it going. Tage hasn’t scored in five games in a row and with that the Sabres offense hasn’t been able to get it moving despite being the highest scoring offense in the league. Shitty loss, especially considering that the Panthers aren’t a good defensive team.
Back in action tomorrow night in Chicago.
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