Saturday, October 15, 2011

Sabres 3, Penguins 2

So what happened?

The Sabres handed the Pens their first loss in regulation for the 2011-12 season.  It was an exciting game, with both teams trading chances.  The Pens simply weren't able to convert on most of their better chances.

The Sabres built leads of 2-0 and 3-1.  Jordan Staal scored late in the third to make it 3-2, and the Sabres took a dumb penalty with 21 seconds left to give the Pens a 6-on-4 advantage, but the Sabres were able to clear the puck past Paul Martin and the Pens never were able to get a shot off.

Who scored?
Neal (5), Staal (2)

The Good?
  • Fleury played well enough to win.
  • James Neal continues to play well.  His goal was a total fluke (it was deflected by Regehr), but he used his size and speed to his advantage in the offensive zone.
  • Jordan Staal dominated on faceoffs (13-6), including a few big wins at the end of the game when the Pens were trying to tie the score.
  • Pascal Dupuis continues to throw the body around out there.  He notched two more hits tonight.
The Bad?
  • A distinct lack of zone time, especially in the first period.
  • Aaron Asham was a -2 and registered no hits.
The Ugly?
  • Nothing really ugly - just your typical Sabres / Penguins game.
Any Surprises?
  • HCDB started switching up lines and defensive pairings big time tonight.  He loaded up with Letang and Martin.  Engelland had a reduced role.  He also put Richard Park with Neal and Sullivan for much of the game.
What's their record now?
The Pens are 3-1-2.

Who's next?
Off to Winnipeg on Monday.  The Jets are still looking for their first win.

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