Quick Hits: Sabres vs. Bruins

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Buffalo looked to remain undefeated with Jack Eichel in the lineup this season, but the Boston Bruins had other plans.

The matinee matchup at the KeyBank Center could not have stared off any worse for the Buffalo Sabres. Not so much in the scoring department, which we will talk about, but just from the perspective of energy.

Buffalo came out this afternoon flatter than a Flat Stanley paper cut out.

In twenty minutes of first period hockey, Buffalo only managed to put three shots on net. Don’t believe me? Check out this fancy hockey chart, which illustrates Buffalo’s first period offensive ineptitude.

Hidden within the Sabres own offensive failures was a first period tally for the Boston Bruins.

A shot from the point off the stick of Brandon Carlo headed straight for Robin Lehner, but David Krejci had other plans. As he was being boxed out by Rasmus Ristolainen, Krejci was able to get his stick on Carlo’s shot.

The tip resulted in Krejci’s 4th goal of the season, at 14:10 of the first period. Boston would head into the first intermission with the 1-0 lead.

Buffalo would also mostly sleepwalk through the second period, despite an increase in offensive

Everyone say it with me – YOU CAN’T DO THAT!

Buffalo’s offense only had less than three minutes following the Gionta no-goal to try and get things back on track but were unfortunately unable to.

After forty minutes at the KeyBank Center, a lot of Sabres fans found themselves bored of the action. This tweet below captures the spirit of the thing.

Me? I was disinterested because cold medication hits me hard and I feel like I’m rolling over here while watching the Sabres dump and chase for three periods.

Boston would continue their relentless churning game in the third, which seemed to befuddle the Buffalo Sabres in both ends.

Boston would also up their lead to 2-1 a little under the midway, when Patrice Bergeron appeared to complete a glove pass to himself. After Bergeron hit the puck across the crease, he skated behind the net and put home the loose puck.

A neat play that could’ve been called back. Bergeron’s 4th of the season, at 7:44 of the third period, gave Boston a 2-0 lead.

Less than two minutes later, Evander Kane would finally lift the 1,000 pound weight off his back.

Can we just take a moment to talk about how good Sam Reinhart is? GOODNESS. Reinhart is so smart and has such a set of hands on him.

As for Kane, this goal should finally get his head back in the game. No secret that Kane has been struggling since returning from cracked ribs. Kane’s 1st goal of the season, at 9:12 of the third period, brought the Sabres to a 2-1 deficit.

That is where the offensive output would halt for Buffalo. As our own Brayton Wilson pointed out on Twitter, the last few minutes of the third period were not kind to the Sabres.

Despite the lack of offense, we were gifted a highlight late in the period, when Ryan O’Reilly made a gigantic save against Brad Marchand.

Yes, you heard that right.

O’Reilly does what it takes for his team to remain in the game. That’s #GRIT.

But, Buffalo lost. Ho hum.

With this 2-1 loss, the Buffalo Sabres move to 9-10-5 on the season with 23 points. This leaves Buffalo in 15th place in the Eastern Conference.

The Buffalo Sabres have a day off on Sunday, before traveling to the nation’s capital for the second time in less than two weeks. On Monday Night, the Sabres will head back to the Verizon Center to take on the Washington Capitals. Puck drops shortly after 7 PM, with the game being broadcast locally on MSG.

Quick hits!

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    • A NHL Debut for Guhle

These are words I certainly thought I would not speak until next October, at the earliest.

Following the emergency recall of junior defenseman Brendan Guhle, we find ourselves staring down the barrel of another National Hockey League debut, which came in today’s game against the Bruins.

Guhle, Buffalo’s 51st overall pick in the 2015 NHL Entry Level Draft, began the 2016-17 Western Hockey League season with the Prince Albert Raiders but found himself being traded to the B.C. Division-leading Prince George Cougars.

In 19 WHL games this season, Guhle has amassed 7 points (5 goals, 2 assists).

Today’s game marked Guhle’s NHL debut, but not his professional debut. Guhle played 6 games last season with the Rochester Americans, following the completion of the WHL season. In those 6 games, Guhle impressed in a small sample size with 4 points (1 goal, 3 assists).

Guhle vs. BOS – 16:20 TOI, tied for team-high 4 shots, team-high 7 shot attempts, 2 blocks, +1 rating

Also, real quick to clear up any confusion – Guhle is in Buffalo for as long as the emergency necessitates. As soon as the emergency situation clears itself up, Guhle will be returned to Prince George of the WHL.

This recall of Guhle certainly shows how much dire of straits the entire organization is in defensively.

Either way, Guhle looked like he belonged today. Hopefully a good sign of things to come.

    • Injuries are still the thing.
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While the recall of Brendan Guhle caught a lot of people by surprise on Friday afternoon, the Buffalo Sabres current injury situation should not be understated.

Defensively, Zach Bogosian is still week-to-week with an MCL sprain, Dmitry Kulikov is day-to-day with his lingering back issue that began in the preseason and now Josh Gorges is out an undetermined amount of time after suffering a foot injury.

If there was so such thing as luck, this team doesn’t have it.

Good news though! According to Dan Bylsma, Dmitry Kulikov will hopefully return to practice this week.

    • Tweet of Game

Written by Ryan Wolfe

Ryan Wolfe is the founder and editor-in-chief of BLTD Sports. He can be heard on the BLTD Podcast. Ryan's writing is also featured over at TheHockeyWriters.com.

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