For the second time in three days, the Buffalo Sabres and Boston Bruins exchanged pleasantries on the ice. This time, the game took place at the TD Garden in Boston.
Unfortunately for the Sabres, the result tonight was the same as Thursday’s matchup, except Buffalo would fall in overtime and not in a shootout.
The first period started well for both sides, the day off doing both teams well. Buffalo and Boston found themselves exchanging solid chances, but neither team could get a jumpstart on scoring until midway through the first.
It was less of a great play by the Bruins and more of an absolutely atrocious play by the Sabres. When it is said the Sabres made a horrible play, it was Cody Franson who is charged with the bad hockey play.
Franson attempted (word used loosely) to clear the puck out of the zone, when he passed it directly to a Bruins player.
This boneheaded play by Franson resulted in a Loui Eriksson goal, his 16th of the season at 12:22 of the first period.
Buffalo would not recover until midway through the second period when Sam Reinhart’s impressive season continued. Reinhart flashed his ability to be in the right place at the right time. His 14th goal of the season, at 10:53 of the second period, not only got Buffalo on the board but appeared to reinvigorate the team for the time being.
As the story ages, it seems to remain the same when it comes to Robin Lehner, who was absolutely excellent tonight. 36 saves on 38 shots, including 26 in the first two periods.
Thanks to the incredible play of Lehner, this game would end up heading to overtime. Buffalo gathers at least a point for the 4th straight game, with a 2-0-2 record in those 4 games.
Overtime found itself to be very uneventful, until a highly questionable call came together before our collective eyes.
Brad Marchand appeared to knock Rasmus Ristolainen’s stick out of his hand, as Ristolainen held onto Marchand. A penalty for sure, but the referees took this call one further. A penalty shot, in overtime.
Marchand penalty shot OT winner pic.twitter.com/tZNgu2Jj3H
— Stephanie (@myregularface) February 7, 2016
Not the most ideal way to lose a game, especially a game where Robin Lehner and company worked so hard to keep themselves deadlocked until the end.
More on this in a few minutes, time for some housekeeping before moving on.
With this 2-1 OT loss, the Buffalo Sabres fall to 21-26-6 on the season with 48 points. Buffalo takes the ice again on Tuesday night when they host the Atlantic Division-leading Florida Panthers at the First Niagara Center. Puck drops a few minutes after 7 PM and the game will be broadcast locally on MSG.
Time to be mad.
- bad call
Man, I am mad online.
Play-by-play on https://t.co/Ih5cl6qlYE says penalty shot was awarded to Marchard because of a hook. BY A GUY WITHOUT A STICK. What!!?!?
— Kevin Oklobzija (@kevinoDandC) February 7, 2016
HOW THE HELL DOES THAT HAPPEN.
You be the judge.
— McEichel.com (@McEicheldotCom) February 7, 2016
I can’t speak words on this while trying to remain professional. I try to remain as impartial as possible, but that was a BAD call.
- Lehner the anchor.
Robin Lehner’s game was a tale of two hockey games. Lehner’s play continued to be strong, with some highlight reel saves in the process.
— Buffalo Sabres (@BuffaloSabres) February 7, 2016
The saves did not stop there, here is another one for the reel.
Lehner save on Hayes pic.twitter.com/YD4UYJZ83i
— Stephanie (@myregularface) February 7, 2016
The game turned shortly after that for Lehner. We all know how this game ended, a borderline call that paid off for the Boston Bruins. Lehner gets the short end of the stick, but those are the unfortunate ebbs and flows of hockey.
Lehner: "Honestly if I say something now, I'm gonna get in…, it wasn't even a penalty, that was… oh my god, embarrassing"
— Brian Koziol (@BrianWGR) February 7, 2016
We feel your pain, Robin.
Looking past the bad call, it is very good to see Lehner continue to put up strong starts and improve on his re-debut with the Sabres.
- Reinhart’s making strides.
*mumbles to self, “simmer down tea pot”*
Ok, back to Earth. Hi, I’m Ryan. Have we met?
Tonight was another very impressive game for forward Sam Reinhart.
As much as people don’t want to admit, Reinhart has gone almost completely under the radar this year. There is absolutely nothing wrong with that.
Tonight, Reinhart recorded his 14th goal of the season. Absolutely fantastic for a kid who is playing in his first full NHL season. Reinhart will be a big part of the Sabres future secondary scoring and he’s definitely flashing his potential up to this point.
- Welcome to the show, kid.
For the first time in his professional career, Dan Catenacci took the ice in a National Hockey League game and took the ice for the first time with the Buffalo Sabres.
Drafted in the 3rd round (77th overall) by the Buffalo Sabres in the 2011 NHL Entry Level Draft, Catenacci has had to earn his way up to the NHL.
Catenacci had played 3 professional seasons in the minor leagues before becoming the 2nd of 6 drafted Buffalo Sabres from the 2011 NHL Draft class to make their NHL debut.
In his debut against Boston, Catenacci donned #43 and logged 7:42 TOI. He also logged 2 shots and 3 hits. Not a bad NHL debut.
Welcome to the show, kid.