Sabres @ Capitals: 3/15/23 – Game Reactions/Recap

Coming off a huge win on Monday night, beating the Leafs 4-3 in Toronto, the Sabres  went into Washington tonight and lost 5-4 in a shootout, a disappointing loss.

The Sabres opened up the scoring just 4:43 into the first period with a screened long distance shot from Ilya Lyubushkin. 9:50 into the game they made it 2-0 with some great skating from Jack Quinn to set up a nice tip in from JJ Peterka. The Caps quickly made it 2-1 with 9:57 left in the game as Ovi tricked everyone on the ice and instead of ripping the puck from the Ovi office at the top of the circle, TJ Oshie tipped in Ovechkin’s sauced pass past UPL. With 1:54 remaining in the first, Buffalo got our two goal lead again with Tyson Jost scoring in transition after some great defensive work to get the puck by Casey Mittelstadt. Solid first period for the Sabres. Love that the offense came to life early and the defense was decent enough.

Evenly played scoreless second period with both teams tied at 9 shots each. Lot of good scoring chances for the Sabres but we weren’t able to score on Lindgren. Not much to complain about though. 

The Caps made it a one goal game again quickly into the third period. Just 1:32 into the period Evgeny Kuznetsov after some good passing for the entire Caps offense. The Sabres answered right back with 14:38 left in regulation, with a Zemgus Girginsons goal, getting right in front and bouncing right on a nice pass from behind the net by Peyton Krebs to put the Sabres up 4-2. With 9:30 to go, the Caps made it a one goal game again on a tip in from none other than the Great8, a tip in from Ovi, making it 4-3 and hitting the over. With Alex Tuch in the box and the goalie on the bench for Washington, Tommy Wilson tied the game up at 4 with just 1:08 left in regulation.

After an entertaining overtime, we went to the shootout. Time for dumb luck to determine a winner of this game. Evgeny Kuznetsov on a very slow shootout attempt, opened it with a goal on UPL. Alex Tuch couldn’t answer back. TJ Oshie, Mr. USA, deked the fuck out of UPL to force Tage Thompson to score to keep it going. With a save by Lindgren, we take the L.

Final: Sabres 4, Capitals 5 (SO)

Disappointing loss, especially considering that we were up 4-2 halfway through the third period and played well. We got outshot 39-27 and outplayed by an expected goal rate of 3.54-2.61, but I felt like we played better than that. Just disappointing for dumb luck to determine the winner of this game. You know shootouts in the NHL are becoming increasingly stupid when the best player in the world, Connor McDavid, has been vocally against it. Big to at least pick up a point tonight and get within three points of the Isles.

Back in action again on Friday in Philly.

Go Sabres.

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