Well that was surprising.
There a quite a few things you could blame tonight’s 5-0, er, 5-2 loss on. Yeah, we had quite a few injuries on the blue line, and having your top three centers out doesn’t help things either. There’s always the officials to blame too, if you want.
Whatever the case, the Sabres were completely outplayed by a good Senators team. Ottawa has struggled to start the season but tonight they were firing on all cylinders. Sure, the Sabres had some downright disgusting play on the blue line, but every chance the Sens were given was in the back of the net. From Jaro’s giveaway in the first to Lydman being turned like a top shift after shift, the Sabres just didn’t have an answer tonight and it showed.
The injuries are a big deal, and they are finally starting to rear their ugly head in the loss column. However, the Sabres had their chances as well and were unable to get anything going until late. The Senators penalty kill was outstanding, and they looked like a top five unit on both sides of special teams tonight. For every scream of “SHOOT” out of the home crowd was a blocked shot and at least two white jerseys in the shooting lanes. Those two goals late were nice and all, but the Sens PK did the real work eight times before.
It was a bad game for sure, but these things happen. When half of your defenseman have terrible games and you can’t get a solid entry pass all night you expect the worst. Ottawa needed a big game and they showed up. The Sabres did not. Let’s move on before the natives get restless and say how terrible the Sabres are. It’s one game, and no one thought the Sabres were going 80-0-2. Right?
A few other thoughts while I watch Spezza’s fake slap shot another dozen times:
– Nice to see Max get his two useless points late. He wasn’t straight up “boobs” tonight, but he was getting there. Also, Sekera completely reverted to “Balls Sekera” mode, something I didn’t think we would see just yet. Is this rookie throwback week in Buffalo and we weren’t told?
– Weber did a good job tonight, and I hope he told Fisher to take his visor off next time he starts a fight. What a b#$ch move.
– Even with the soulcrushing loss I had a good time tonight. It’s been a depressing week or so around these parts, and it was just nice to get out there with some friends and talk hockey. The past two days have been rough, but it’s still a great time to be a sports fan in Buffalo. I think people have a difficult time transitioning from bad teams to good teams and they forget that not all setbacks are catastrophic.
– I’m about done with the Matt Ellis experiment. The only positive thing he did tonight was pick up the laundry after Peters’ scrap. In fact, from now on we’re going to call him “BenJarvus Matt-Ellis.” That about sums up his status on the team for me.
– I’m completely sick of the direction fighting in hockey has been taken by the league. If not for Peters stepping up tonight I don’t know what I would have to say about this team sans Rivet. I can’t wait for another five games full of staring contests between Kaleta and Neil. Riveting.
– The Ferrunginous Pygmy-Owl of the game goes to Jason Spezza for being a good hockey player. I don’t know who else to give it too, but I know no one on the Sabres was deserving of an imaginary animal achievement.