Buffalo - December 3, 2014 - Following every Sabres game, we’ll be taking a little look at the previous night’s action with a little segment called “good, bad and ugly”. Expect a loooooooot of ugly.
Somehow, some way the Sabres continue to win, topping the NHL’s best team in Tampa Bay 2-1 on Tuesday night.
I’ll be writing a piece further elaborating on it, but Jhonas Enroth, you guys. He was outstanding yet again, turning aside 26 of 27 and shutting down Ryan Callahan and Ondrej Palat in the shootout to give the Sabres the victory.
He’s been absolutely outstanding over his last six starts, stopping 183 of 192 for a .953 save percentage and helping to raise the confidence level of this team by about 2,000%. He’s been lights out and looks like he knows he can shut down anyone at any time.
While the scoring wasn’t there, it came when it mattered and arguably Buffalo’s best forward came through. Zemgus Girgensons did what he could to justify his place as the NHL’s leading vote-getter for the All-Star game by tying the game at 1-1 with just about four minutes to go in the game.
Even when he’s not producing on the score sheet, he’s doing all the little things that players need to do. He leads the Sabres with eight goals, but he provides energy and physicality, both traits that can get the team going at any time. Without these two, things wouldn’t be looking nearly as sunny in Buffalo.
For the most part, this was a wholly uninteresting game. I expected the Lightning, who are very deep offensively, to put a ton of pressure on and eventually crack Enroth at some point. And while he was sharp, 27 shots is a walk in the park for a Sabres goalie these days.
I suppose every team has a night off sometimes, but it produced one of the duller games I’ve watched in a while.
On the other bad side of the coin: how do you only score one goal on 59-year-old Evgeni Nabokov? Since he left the Sharks way back when, he’s just kind of been this middling, drunk-looking old Russian goalie who leaves me going “he’s still playing?!” every time I see him. At least they didn’t let him beat them, because that would be another four paragraphs.
I know they’re playing better, but who at NBCSN decided to put the Sabres on as much as they have? Have they been fired and/or flogged yet? Because if not, that should happen immediately. It’d be one thing if these schedules were totally on the fly, but they aren’t. They’re planned out when the schedule is released, meaning someone before the season said “hey, let’s put the Sabres on a bunch” knowing how awful they were going to be this year.
That wouldn’t be a problem if NHL Gamecenter would just let me watch ALL the games instead of blacking out local games. Guess what, Gamecenter? If I had freakin’ cable, I would just watch that instead of paying all this money for your product. But I don’t, so here we are. Instead, I have to jump through all these hoops to be able to watch games that are on cable because the service. JUST GIVE ME ALL THE GAMES.
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