Sabres @ Lightning: 2/23/23 – Game Reactions/Recap

Tonight the Sabres went into Tampa Bay and picked up a huge 6-5 overtime win in a highly entertaining, fun game against the Lightning to bounce back from the horrible loss to the Leafs on Tuesday.

The Lightning scored early to put the Sabres in a hole again as Steven Stamkos took a great shot to beat Comrie just 2:19 into the game. The Sabres tied it up though with 8:36 left in the first with Zemgus Girgensons slowly tipping in a shot past Vasilevskiy from Rasmus Dahlin to make it 1-1. Not a great start for the Sabres even though it was a tied game, as we got outshot 9-3, although the shot attempts were 13-12 Tampa.

Skinner carries, Thompson buries! The Sabres took a 2-1 lead 9:31 into the second period with a great pass from Skins to Tommer on a three on one on the powerplay to give Buffalo our first lead of the game. Just a few minutes later with 7:40 left in the second, Skinner put an even more impressive pass in the perfect spot for Tage to score once again, making it 3-1 Sabres. Victor Hedman answered back just 16 seconds later though with a good shot on goal to put the Bolts back into it at 3-2 to turn this into a one goal game once again. The quick scoring kept rolling with Jack Quinn putting it past Vasy less than a minute later to put the Sabres up 4-2 with 6:35 remaining in the second period. We played really well in that period, especially in the second half of it, outshooting Tampa 12-6 to give us the two goal lead.

In the third period, Brayden Point scored 5:48 into the period to make it a 4-3 game (and hit the over), getting behind the entire Sabres defense and beating Comrie. TNT, Tage Thompson though, put the puck five hole to score his hat trick on Vasilevskiy and give the Sabres a 5-3 lead with 13:42 left in regulation. With chaos in front of the net, Anthony Cirelli got the goal for Tampa, making it a one goal game again with 11:27 left in the game. Tampa tied up the game at five with 5:06 to go in the third period with Ross Colton scoring in open space.

With a save for Comrie in the closing seconds of the game, we go to overtime and pick up a point against the Bolts. They do get a power play though to go into OT with a pretty shitty call. Ilya Lyubushkin took the puck away from Stammer, went on the breakaway, and with his first goal as a Buffalo Sabre got the Sabres a huge 6-5 win in overtime.

Final: Sabres 6, Lightning 5

Great win for the Sabres in a very tough game that I really didn’t expect us to win. It was the first time scoring six goals on Vasilevskiy and with the way this game played out, with us getting outshot 41-23 by the Bolts and outplayed by an expected goal rate of 5.04-2.95, it was surprising to get the win. Big win for us tonight and a huge two points in the standing. Awesome reaction for the boys too on the Lyubushkin game winner. But we wouldn’t have even gotten to that point if it weren’t for the fourth hatty for Tage Thompson this season and the fifth of his career with the beautiful passing from Jeff Skinner tonight.

Awesome game and awesome win for the Sabres.

Let’s Go Buffalo.

Back in action tomorrow night against the Panthers.

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