I admit that I forgot I was going to the game tonight and because of the first two periods I wasn’t so sure I was glad I remembered. They were just awful, but the complete hideousness of the game was broken up by Derek Roy’s goal with 3:53 left in the second and everyone in the arena at that point was thinking the same thing “It’s about time”. Through the first two periods it seemed as if the team couldn’t do anything right. Their passing was horrible and they couldn’t seem to get the puck out of our end with Rangers outshooting us 14 to 7 in the first period. The second period was even worse with first shot on goal coming with 10 minutes already gone in the period. The fans were getting frustrated with good reason because that shot was met with derisive cheering and clapping. The Sabres stepped it up in the third because I’m pretty sure I could hear Ruff yelling, from the dressing room up in the 300s, to get their asses in gear something they seemed to have a problem with in the first and second. The only player who showed up for all three periods was Miller and I’ll even forgive him that goal because he was screened and it came from a wrist shot almost out at the blue line.
Overtime was back and forth between zones which was really frustrating because at that point you know that it’s going to a shootout. I hate shootouts, I hate them on principle usually because we’re always on the losing end but tonight the Sabres pulled it off. Ales Kotalik had the lone goal in the shootout for the Sabres but it turned out to be just enough with Miller stone walling the three New York shots.
It’s horrible to say but the Sabres deserved to lose that game because of their play in the first two periods. The Rangers were the superior team for most of the game both out shooting, out skating and overall out playing the Sabres but once again the Sabres managed to pull a goal out of their butts and sneak away with a win in the shootout.
The scariest part of the game came with 16 minutes left in the first period when, after colliding with Paul Gaustad, Michal Rosival fell face into the open doorway at the Sabres bench hitting his face on the corner of the boards. He skated across the ice to the Ranger bench and sat down next to Henrik Lundquist who sat out the game allowing Steve Valiquette to get the start. After being examined by the trainer Rosival was escorted to the Ranger locker room and didn’t return to the game. On the post game show it was reported that Rosival had recieved a gash that stretched the length of his cheek. I wouldn’t be surprised to learn that he also suffered a neck injury after the way he hit those boards with his neck snapping back so quickly it looked like his head was replaced with a bouncy ball.
Speaking of neck injuries from the seats where my mom and I sit for the games we can see the part of the press box that the injured players sit in during the national anthem I turned around to see Pat Kaleta sporting a neck brace and managed to snap a picture of it with the phone on my camera, which is why it’s really fuzzy, during one of the stoppages in play. He looked really bored which I would be if I had to sit and watch my teammates play without me. Max Afinogenov put in an appearance leaning over the edge to look out at the crowd during the first intermission. Jeanerette showed up during the second intermission talking to Kaleta all the while chowing down on a cookie.
That’s him on the left.
Today marked the halfway point in the Sabres season and before tonights game they were dead even in wins and losses with 20 each counting shootout and overtime losses. Tonight’s game was also the 4th win in a row for the Sabres putting them at 4-0 since the New Year if this streak continues the Sabres can say hello to a playoff spot (let’s hope) because as it stands right now they are tied with Carolina for 7th place in the Eastern conference.
As the guy in the booth at the parking ramp said tonight it was an important win for the Sabres tonight because tomorrow we play (shudder, cringe) Detroit who we haven’t played at all this season and who I’m not looking forward to playing at all for obvious reasons mainly Henrik Zetterberg and Ty Conklin (why is it that we get rid of a player and they do fantastically on another team it’s got to be part of the Buffalo curse I tell you).
Well I’m attending the blogger get together tomorrow so for those of you who are going it’ll be nice to put a blog with a face I look forward to meeting you.