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Bruins Rout Sabres 7-4 in Offensive Explosion

They say it’s better to be lucky than good. Chuck Kobasew would probably agree.

The Boston forward scored the eventual deciding goal late in the 2nd period of last night’s 7-4 Bruins victory, banking a shot off Sabres goaltender Ryan Miller from behind the net and in. The goal was Kobasew’s 2nd tally of the game, as the Bruins forward also found the twine early in the 1st period.

Early on, it appeared as though Buffalo would run away with the victory, jumping out to an early 1-0 lead on the strength of a Jason Pominville backhand which beat Boston netminder Manny Fernandez. 

Minutes later Kobasew notched his first goal, capitalizing on a pass from David Krejci, who had drawn Miller out of his crease. Kobasew re-directed a hard feed from Krejci into the wide open net to even the score at 1-1.

Buffalo continued its early offensive output, scoring two times in 30 seconds to give the Sabres an early 3-1 lead on goals from Derek Roy and Thomas Vanek. 

Boston would cut the deficit to 3-2 thanks to a goal from Krejci. The young Czech center flung a shot on net from the far right blueline, and the shot deflected off Buffalo defenseman Teppo Numminen and past Miller to put Boston back within a goal.

Buffalo would once again regain a two-goal lead with 7:23 remaining in the frame, as Vanek found the back of the net on a Sabres power play, notching his league-leading 15th strike of the season. The goal would be the last for Buffalo however, as the Bruins would go on the score five unanswered goals. 

Bruins center Marc Savard started the onslaught, taking a cross-crease feed from linemate Phil Kessel and putting it past Miller with 13:08 gone in the frame. 

Bruins captain Zdeno Chara struck next for Boston on a power play, blasting a slapshot from the point past Miller to even the score at 4-4.

10 minutes later, Kobasew’s 2nd tally of the game would deflate the Sabres, as the Bruins took their 1st lead of the night with 7:29 left to play in the 2nd. 

Chara scored his 2nd of the night in a similar fashion with 2:48 to play in the frame, again on the power play. The big defenseman took a feed from Patrice Bergeron at the high point and one-timed a slapshot past Miller in a strike that was eerily similar to his 1st of the night. 

Phil Kessel capped the scoring for the Bruins in the 3rd period, taking a feed from Milan Lucic and beating Miller five-hole to give Boston the 7-4 lead. Savard also assisted on the goal, notching his 4th point of the night and 600th of his career. The tally was quickly followed by a goaltending change, as Buffalo coach Lindy Ruff replaced the struggling Miller with backup Patrick Lalime. 

Boston welcomes the cellar-dwelling Florida Panthers to town on Friday night. The puck drops at 7:00 pm, with NESN coverage beginning at 6:30 pm.

Inside the Game

  • Buffalo outshot Boston 29-23 in the game, thanks in large part to a 14-7 advantage in the first.
  • Dennis Wideman, Chuck Kobasew, Blake Wheeler, David Krejci, and Matt Hunwick all finished the game with a rating of +3. 
  • Patrice Bergeron, Michael Ryder, and PJ Axelsson were -2 on the night. 
  • Wideman led Boston with 22:34 minutes of ice time. 
  • Chara led the Bruins in SOG, with 6.

Stud of the Game

Marc Savard (BOS) – Boston’s most consistent point producer since his arrival in 2006-2007, Savard continues to be one of the game’s best, and most underrated players. The center notched a goal and 3 assists in the game, and the 1st line of Lucic-Savard-Kessel continues to impress. Savard’s assist on the Kessel goal was the 600th point of his career, and I wouldn’t be surprised if ‘Savvy’ eventually surpasses the 1,000-point plateau in the future.

Dud of the Game

Ryan Miller (BUF) – One of the easier selections I’ve had to make for DotG thus far, Miller was atrocious for Buffalo last night, allowing 7 goals on just 20 shots. Miller is a top-flight netminder, and also is the key to Buffalo’s success. As he goes, so go the Sabres. Right now, they’re free-falling due in large part to Miller’s mediocre play, and if Buffalo hopes to contend for the division, they’ll need the young American backstop to pick up his play.

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Discussion

One comment for “Bruins Rout Sabres 7-4 in Offensive Explosion”

  1. Good read. I enjoy the Inside of the Game section.

    Posted by Rem | November 20, 2008, 12:50 pm

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