Posts Tagged ‘Buffalo’

Detroit at Buffalo (2/26/11)

Saturday, February 26th, 2011

The Red Wings started their five game road trip tonight in Buffalo. Joey MacDonald was in net for the Wings and the Sabres started Ryan Miller. Filppula and Modano both returned to the lineup tonight so that’s excellent news for the Wings. Mursak was sent back to Grand Rapids and unfortunately Drew Miller was a healthy scratch. He had been expecting to compete against his brother and his parents and other family members were on hand to watch the game live so it’s too bad he wasn’t in the lineup. Rafalski was out with back spasms but he’ll be joining the team for the rest of the road trip. They’ll return to Detroit to pick him up and drop off Franzen so he can be with his wife who’s expecting to deliver their first child soon. Salei’s wife is also about to deliver a baby but they live near L.A. so when the Wings land there he’ll be heading right out to join her.

It started out like a home game for Detroit in the sense that they were badly outplayed in the first period and spotted the Sabres two goals. The Sabres outshot the Wings 15 to 7 in the first period. Their first goal was a rare one by defenseman Sekera. It was a hell of a shot though. He roofed a backhander perfectly over MacDonald’s shoulder. Their second goal was a wrister by Grier. So the Wings ended the first period down two to nothing. Having just played the night before, the Sabres seemed more warmed up than tired.

In the second period the Red Wings got back to their game. They started playing much better defensively and scored a power play goal. Datsyuk shot from the slot area and the rebound came right back to him. He snapped it back at the net before Miller could get himself reset. That brought the Wings to within one.

In the third period the Sabres just collapsed back to their own end and played a purely defensive game. They had no fore check and were content to just dump the puck back into the Red Wings’ end whenever they got it. That meant that Detroit had lots of time in Buffalo’s z0ne and were able to keep up the pressure. That’s a dangerous thing to allow the Red Wings but Ryan Miller was playing very well and the Wings weren’t able to beat him. Until almost the end, that is. In the final minute the Wings pulled Joey MacDonald and Hudler came out in his place. Hudler jumped over the boards and charged straight for the net. Just as he reached the slot area a rebound bounced off Miller right to him and he one-timed it into the net for the game tying goal. The first goal of Hudler’s NHL career was against Miller in Buffalo so it was fitting that he scored one tonight and at a critical time, too!

The final minute passed with no goals and the game went to overtime. There were some great saves at both ends but no goals in the OT so it went to the shootout. First was Stafford and MacDonald stopped him. Then Datsyuk went and hit the water bottle with a beautiful backhand. Vanek was next and MacDonald stopped him as well. So, Hudler came up next with the game on his stick. He moved in on Miller, made a few dekes and then released the same backhand shot that Datsyuk had scored with. The puck hit the crossbar and bounced off Miller’s back and into the net for the game winner. Hudler was mobbed by the team and the Wings checked off a win to start their road trip.

It was a great comeback for the Wings and a great game for Hudler. After being outshot in the first period, the Wings outshot the Sabres in the second and third periods 12 to 7 and 16 to 7, respectively. They really need to get these slow starts under control though because this won’t cut it in the playoffs.

This 3-2 win brings us to:
82 points

Buffalo at Detroit (3/13/10)

Saturday, March 13th, 2010

The Red Wings were at home again tonight for the last time before they head out west. Their opponent was the Buffalo Sabres who beat them badly when they met earlier this season. This game featured an interesting matchup between brothers Ryan and Drew Miller. They had about 30 family and friends in attendance at the game since it was the first time they’ve played each other in their home state of Michigan. The goalies for tonight’s game were Jimmy Howard and Ryan Miller. If the Red Wings could win this game they would jump a point ahead of Calgary and be just one point behind Nashville, neither of whom was playing tonight.

The game started with a great pace. The Red Wings were pressuring hard at Buffalo’s end and were rewarded with a goal just two minutes in. Stuart had fired the puck hard off the back board and it came right to Datsyuk on the goal line. Datsyuk shot from a bad angle. The puck went behind Miller, hit the inside of the far goalpost and banked into the net. It was a beautiful play and it got the Red Wings off to a great start in this game.

Just a few minutes later the Red Wings scored again. Eaves brought the puck into the zone and as he was heading toward the net he was tripped up with a stick between the legs. As he was falling down he poked the puck towards Miller who wasn’t expecting it. His poke sent the puck over Miller’s stick just as he was about to play it. The puck went up into the net giving the Red Wings an early two to nothing lead.

Then Buffalo entered the Red Wings zone and shot from the point. Howard stopped it with his stick and tried to push the rebound out to Rafalski. Hecht was moving up though and positioned himself between Rafalski and Howard. Hecht poked at it and got it by Jimmy Howard and into the net. That put the Sabres back in the game making it two to one.

The Red Wings had a great first period. They doubled the Sabres in shots on goal and more than doubled them in chances even though they had only half the penalty minutes.

In the second period the Sabres had another shot on goal that Howard saved but didn’t deal well with the rebound. After the save he sent the puck right to slot with Pominville charging in. Pominville took the puck but didn’t shoot it. He dropped it off for Hecht who did shoot it and beat Howard for his and the Sabres second goal of the night. That tied it up at two each.

The tie held through the end of the second period. Although the Sabres outscored the Red Wings in the second, the Wings were still outshooting and out chancing them by a wide margin.

The Wings continued to play hard throughout the third period but weren’t able to score. With 1:13 left Buffalo was called for delay of game when Myers chipped the puck out of play from his own end. The Red Wings had several great scoring chances but weren’t able to score before time ran out.

The power play continued into overtime which gave the Red Wings 47 seconds of 4 on 3 play. Early in the overtime Lidstrom got the puck across to Rafalski with Cleary in front of Miller. Rafalski stepped up and blasted one that found a tiny opening into the net for the game winning goal.

This was a huge win for the Wings. They played great against a really good team and they got the two points they needed. Well done! Now they head out on a west coast trip that will have a major effect on the standings. First stop, Calgary.

This 2-3 win brings us to:
78 points

Detroit at Buffalo (10/13/09)

Tuesday, October 13th, 2009

Tonight the Red Wings were in Buffalo to take on the Sabres. Ryan Miller was the starting goalie for the Sabres and Chris Osgood was in net for the Wings. Draper was a healthy scratch and Helm was in.

The Wings got off to a sluggish start and the Sabres were badly outshooting them. Luckily Osgood was amazing. He made several great saves early on.

Then Stuart was called for slashing and on the Sabres scored on the power play. Osgood stopped the initial shot but the rebound landed right in front of Stafford who popped it home.

A few minutes later the Wings went on the power play. Kronwall sent the puck towards the crease and Filppula deflected it into the net to tie the game at one.

By the end of the first period Detroit was outshooting the Sabres eleven to eight. The tied scored held so it was still one to one heading into the second.

In the second period the Red Wings seemed to slack again and Osgood was coming up big just like in the first period. Then there was a delayed offside in the Sabres end so the Wings couldn’t touch the puck. Myers took the puck from his own end all the way to the net and tried to stuff it home but Osgood blocked it out. The rebound came out front and Kaleta shot it and scored to give the Sabres the two to one lead.

A few minutes later Vanek brought the puck in with Lidstrom defending him. Vanek held up and Lidstrom stayed right with him. He shot the puck and Lidstrom put his stick down to try to block it. The puck hit Lidstrom’s stick and changed direction suddenly. Osgood was surprised by the sudden change in direction and it got by him. That gave the Sabres a two goal lead.

A few minutes after THAT Osgood was again making some brilliant saves and the puck came to MacArthur right in front of the net. He released a very quick sweeping shot from close range that got under Osgood and made it four to one Sabres. It really didn’t look like he was going to shoot the puck. It had gone off his skate and he kicked it toward his stick. It looked like he was going to stick handle it and instead he swept it right into the net. Maybe Osgood should have been ready for it but that would have been asking a lot. It’s hard to blame him for that one.

A few seconds later the Sabres scored again. Roy brought the puck across the crease and Osgood followed him. Roy tried to forehand to backhand and lost the puck in front of the open side of the net. Vanek followed and put it in. Suddenly it was five to one. I’m blaming Brad Stuart for that one since he was covering Vanek. Osgood can’t be everywhere at once, he needed a little help from the rest of the team.

The Red Wings pulled Osgood and put in Jimmy Howard after that goal but I don’t think Babcock was really blaming Osgood. The Wings were just looking poor offensively and defensively. Goal tending wasn’t the issue.

With a few minutes left in the second period Filppula made a great rush to the net and got tripped up. He was awarded a penalty shot on the play. He shucked and jived but Miller stayed with him and stopped his shot easily.

The second period ended with the Sabres still up five to one. They had outshot the Red Wings in the second period 18 to 4.

In the third period the troubles continued. Kaleta had the puck in the corner and fed it to Gaustad who was standing in front of the net like he owned it. He redirected the puck into Howard’s pads and then took a second whack at it sending it through the five hole and making it six to one.

Halfway through the third period Rafalski threw the puck toward the net with Holmstrom in front. Zetterberg and Holmstrom both got a stick on it and it was deflected past Ryan Miller and into the net making it six to two.

That was pretty much it for this one. The Red Wings looked a little more energetic in the third but it was far too little too late. They looked pretty terrible overall but I thought Helm and Filppula looked good and believe it or not, Osgood did, too. Let’s hope we don’t see many more games like that one. It looks like the Stanley Cup hangover finally hit!

This 2-6 loss brings us to:
4 points

Detroit at Buffalo (4/6/09)

Monday, April 6th, 2009

Tonight the Red Wings played the second night of back to back games after beating the Wild yesterday. They traveled to Buffalo to take on the Sabres. Buffalo is another team fighting for every point to make the playoffs so the Red Wings expected to have their hands full once again. Miller was the goalie for the Sabres and Osgood was in for Detroit.

Early in the game both teams had some good scoring chances. Buffalo seemed to be doing a better job of puck possession and were getting more shots. Osgood looked sharp and made several awesome saves.

Late in the first period Franzen was hit with a high stick just below his eye and was badly cut during a scoring chance. The referees missed the high stick which cost the Red Wings four minutes of power play time.

Late in the second period Detroit finally got a power play. Osgood moved the puck up the ice quickly during a Buffalo change. The Red Wings went to work before the Sabres were set. The puck came to Stuart at the top of the slot. He released a shot with Holmstrom in front of the net blocking Miller’s view. The puck found its way through everyone and into the net to give the Red Wings the one nothing lead. It look like the puck redirected slightly off of Holmstrom’s knee but it was awarded to Stuart so it must not have touched him.

Not long after play continued there was a pretty good sized brawl. Filppula cleanly hit MacArthur and leveled him. Butler came in and started shoving Filppula and a crowd gathered. Samuelsson punched Roy to the ice and that really ticked him off so he got up and came after Samuelsson. Stafford grabbed Ericsson and nailed him with a few good ones. Then Ericsson wrestled Stafford to the ice and wailed on him with several punches to the face. When all was said and done, the Sabres had a two minute power play. However, right after the faceoff Connolly chopped Stuart’s stick in half and was called for slashing. That ended the power play after just two seconds.

After two periods the shots on goal were even at 21.

Early in the third period, still 4 on 4, Hossa forechecked hard and got control of the puck along the boards behind the net. He passed it to Zetterberg and Zetterberg passed it to Lidstrom at the point. Lidstrom took a shot and by that time Hossa was back to the front of the net. He picked up the rebound after Lidstrom’s shot, went skate to stick with it and shot it in. That gave the Wings a two nothing lead and it all started with a great job on the initial forecheck by Hossa. That was Hossa’s 40th goal of the season. He becomes only eighth player in league history to score 40 goals with three different teams.

Nearing the halfway point of the third period Datsyuk won a faceoff back to Ericsson who shot the puck into the zone from center ice. Holmstrom dug it out from the side boards and got it to Datsyuk. He made a move on his defender and took it to the slot. Then he dished it to Hossa who was approaching from the other side. Hossa dropped to one knee and one timed it into the back of the net. It was a beautiful play all around to give the Wings a three nothing lead.

A few second later Buffalo got one back. Osgood made the initial stop but the rebound dropped by the side of the open net. Osgood thought it was in his glove but it wasn’t. Cleary tried to clear the puck out of there but Gaustad was there and chipped it in before he could do so.

With about two minutes to go Buffalo pulled their goalie. The Sabres did their best to score but Lidstrom scored an empty net goal to make it four to one. That was it for this one.

Detroit played an excellent road game tonight. They’re really looking good right now. Osgood is playing well. To me they look playoff ready right now. Let’s keep it going for the next three games.

This 4-1 win brings us to:
111 points

Buffalo at Detroit (1/10/09)

Saturday, January 10th, 2009

The Buffalo Sabres rolled into Joe Louis Arena tonight to face the Wings after just having played the night before.  Kronwall was a scratch for this game apparently for a health issue not an injury.  Mickey made it sounds like he probably just had a cold or something.  Ryan Miller was the starting net minder for the Sabres and Conklin was in for Detroit.

Ken Daniels called this game from between the benches and carried a handheld camera to get footage from that vantage point.  Mickey Redmond was alone in the booth and Larry Murphy was wandering around on foot.

Buffalo opened the scoring in the first period.  Conklin initially made the stop but he was down on his knees and the puck ended up on the ice in front of him.  Derek Roy chipped it over his leg and in to give the Sabres the one nothing lead.

There was a lot of action in the first period but Detroit wasn’t able to answer the goal.  The pace was really fast.  There were very few whistles and lots of end to end action.  The Sabres obviously came to play and Miller was looking very sharp.  Detroit was better in all the stats after one period except for the most important one.  The Sabres were doing a great job of clogging up the neutral zone and not letting Detroit move the puck.  The Wings were still getting some good scoring chances but Miller was sharp each time.

Nearing the end of second period the Wings persistence finally paid off.  Lebda brought the puck into the zone with speed.  He passed it back to Hudler who beat Miller with a one timer.  That was the only goal in the second period so it was tied up after two.

Nearing the end of the third period Hudler fed Sauelsson perfectly in front of the net.  he pulled the puck in and moved to the other side of the crease.  Miller dove in that direction and laid out on the ice.  Samuelsson took his time and chipped it up and over him to give the Wings the lead.  Then just a few seconds later they did it again.  Zetterberg passed to Hossa in the slot.  He ripped it at Miller.  Miller made the initial stop but the puck looked like it got through under his arm.  He had it at first but it dropped out behind him inside the goal line.  Just like that the Wings had a two goal lead with less than two minutes to go.

The Red Wings hung on to win the game three to one.  They played very very well in this game against a Buffalo team that had a lot of energy.  The Wings had a season high 48 shots on goal which was more than twice what the Sabres had.

This 3-1 win brings us to:
63 points

Detroit at Buffalo (3/2/08)

Sunday, March 2nd, 2008

Ahh, that’s better.

The Wings looked great tonight. The energy level was amazing. You could sense the desperation; these guys wanted a win. The offensive magic was back. Franzen had a particularly strong game. Lilia made a great save when Hasek was down. Everybody played well together, it was a really just a fantastic effort all around.

Buffalo’s second goal was a little iffy. There was a scrum against the boards when some Buffalo players started pushing Maltby around because they didn’t like a hit that he made. A bunch of players joined in and the officials didn’t stop play. A Buffalo player sneaked the puck out of the pile and went in alone against Hasek. I guess it was the Wings own fault for not paying attention to the game, but normally you’d expect a whistle when a scrum like that breaks out.

Ryan Miller made some brilliant saves. I still think he’s one of the best goalies in the league. His positioning is spot-on. Luckily, it wasn’t enough to stop the Wings.

Incidentally, I saw the Buffalo broadcast and they had a nice interview with Steve Yzerman during the first intermission. They also had a shot of Mickey Redmond in the booth when they announced him as the answer to their trivia question.

This 4-2 win brings us to:
92 points