34 SOG
36 SOG

Sabres win six-round shootout against Maple Leafs

Chris Ryndak  - Correspondent | Thursday, 03.21.2013 / 11:25 PM

BUFFALO -- Steve Ott's shootout goal proved to be the difference in a wild game between the Buffalo Sabres and Toronto Maple Leafs at a raucous First Niagara Center on Thursday.

The goal by Ott in the top of the sixth round of the shootout lifted the Sabres over the Maple Leafs 5-4.

Ott came in fast and slipped a backhand in past James Reimer's left pad. Ryan Miller then stopped Clarke MacArthur to secure the extra point.

"I was excited. Anytime you get a chance to score a goal or to be in a shootout, those are fun games," Ott said.

Toronto's Tyler Bozak faked a shot then wristed one over Miller's blocker in the bottom of the second round to put the Maple Leafs ahead. Drew Stafford kept Buffalo alive with a shot that trickled in off Reimer's glove.

Nazem Kadri scored twice in regulation and added an assist, and Bozak and Mikhail Grabovski each had a goal for the Maple Leafs. Reimer stopped 32 shots. Kadri nearly put the Leafs ahead in the first round of the shootout, but Miller, sliding back into the net, managed to keep the puck out.

Miller made 30 saves. Tyler Ennis, Marcus Foligno, Jason Pominville and Christian Ehrhoff scored in regulation for the Sabres, who battled back from a 3-1 deficit in the second period. Foligno and Ennis scored before intermission to make it 3-3, and Ehrhoff gave them a lead early in the third.

"That's character, absolutely," Ott said. "It's the process that we've continued to stick with in this dressing room for over a month now since [interim coach Ron Rolston's] come in. We've tried to clean up details."

Buffalo has won back-to-back games and has points in nine of its last 12.

"We're doing it one at a time. We appreciate winning the last game and it's a good job coming back tonight. Winning's fun," Miller said. "They're not going to ask how you got it done when it comes down it. We have a job to do and just keep ticking them off one at a time and see where we end up here. I think that's just the best way to do it."

Ehrhoff had two assists to cap a three-point night, his third multipoint game of the season. The defenseman's rocket from the point 22 seconds into the third period put the Sabres ahead 4-3.

Buffalo started the period on a power play, and on their first possession in Toronto's zone, Ennis carried the puck over the blue line and dropped it back to Cody Hodgson. He passed it backward one more time to Ehrhoff at the right point, where he leaned into a slap shot that beat Reimer.

"We stuck to our game plan and it didn't really affect us when we got down by two. We kept rolling and built off the first goal and came back," Ehrhoff said of the comeback.

Toronto tied it 4-4 when Kadri scored his second of the game at 6:33. With the man advantage, Phil Kessel moved the puck to the right point where Cody Franson fired a shot on goal. Kadri deflected it past Miller as James van Riemsdyk drew two defenders in front of the net.

Kadri has two goals and six assists in his past three games and leads Toronto with 33 points.

Despite having collected just five points in their last seven games with a 1-3-3 record, the Maple Leafs are still optimistic about their play as they try to break a playoff drought that extends to 2004.

"I think we're doing a lot of good things," Kadri said. "Bits and pieces of the game start to get away and drift from our structure. That's where we start to find ourselves in a little bit of trouble, but for the most part, if we can put together a 60-minute game, we're going to be a tough team to beat."

Reimer echoed those sentiments.

"It's not great that we're winning games but at the same time we're getting points. If things aren't going your way and you're still getting points, that's the best of a worst-case scenario," he said. "Obviously you want to be putting more wins up there, but if we can fight and scrape for points, that's pretty good for being in a down time."

The third period was filled with end-to-end rushes and breaks by both teams. Each goaltender had to come up with big stops to keep the game tied.

With 3:34 left in regulation, Miller received help from his right post when van Riemsdyk cranked a shot off the pipe.

Buffalo earned a power play with 1:17 to play in regulation when Kulemin was called for high sticking. Bozak stole the puck in his own end and was stopped by Miller on a 2-on-1 with 47.7 seconds left in the third, and Toronto was able to kill off the rest of penalty in overtime.

The gloves came off early. Before a faceoff in the Buffalo zone 2:09 after the start, Maple Leafs forward Frazer McLaren poked at Sabres forward John Scott and the two went at it as soon as the puck hit the ice. Toronto's Colton Orr simultaneously charged after Buffalo's Patrick Kaleta and cross-checked him before the two traded punches. Orr was called for cross-checking, instigating and fighting, and received a 10-minute game misconduct that put the Sabres on a four-minute power play, though they were unable to capitalize.

The game remained scrappy and fast-paced to the point where many players said it felt like a playoff game.

"I thought tonight, the crowd made it a playoff atmosphere. I had chills the whole game. I'm sure all of us [did]," Ott said. "It was intense. It was an atmosphere and that was a fun, fun game."

TOR ()
BUF ()
Scoring Summary
1st Period
08:48TOR PPG - Tyler Bozak (9) Snap shot - ASST: Phil Kessel (19), Dion Phaneuf (12) 1 - 0 TOR
10:04TOR Nazem Kadri (12) Tip-in - ASST: Nikolai Kulemin (12), Clarke MacArthur (9) 2 - 0 TOR
18:54BUF Tyler Ennis (9) Wrist shot - ASST: Steve Ott (12), Cody Hodgson (13) 2 - 1 TOR
2nd Period
08:52TOR Mikhail Grabovski (7) Tip-in - ASST: Jake Gardiner (1), Nazem Kadri (20) 3 - 1 TOR
11:39BUF Marcus Foligno (4) Wrist shot - ASST: Kevin Porter (2), Christian Ehrhoff (11) 3 - 2 TOR
12:24BUF Jason Pominville (10) Wrist shot - ASST: Cody Hodgson (14) 3 - 3 Tie
3rd Period
00:22BUF PPG - Christian Ehrhoff (3) Slapshot - ASST: Cody Hodgson (15), Tyler Ennis (14) 4 - 3 BUF
06:33TOR PPG - Nazem Kadri (13) Tip-in - ASST: Cody Franson (16), Phil Kessel (20) 4 - 4 Tie
OT Period
1BUFJason Pominville - Save
2TORNazem Kadri - Save
3BUFTyler Ennis - Save
4TORTyler Bozak - Goal
5BUFDrew Stafford - Goal
6TORJames van Riemsdyk - Save
7BUFCody Hodgson - Save
8TORPhil Kessel - Save
9BUFVille Leino - Save
10TORMikhail Grabovski - Missed
11BUFSteve Ott - Goal
12TORClarke MacArthur - Save
Shootout Summary
RNDBuffalo SabresToronto Maple Leafs
1Jason Pominville
Nazem Kadri
2Tyler Ennis
Tyler Bozak
3Drew Stafford
James van Riemsdyk
4Cody Hodgson
Phil Kessel
5Ville Leino
Mikhail Grabovski
6Steve Ott
Clarke MacArthur
Three Stars of the Game
Christian Ehrhoff
G: 1Shots: 3
A: 1Hits: 1
PTS: 2PIM: 0
+/-: 3TOI: 27:01
Nazem Kadri
G: 2Shots: 8
A: 1Hits: 0
PTS: 3PIM: 0
+/-: 1TOI: 21:27
Tyler Ennis
G: 1Shots: 4
A: 1Hits: 1
PTS: 2PIM: 2
+/-: 0TOI: 24:12
Penalty Summary
1st Period
02:09TOR Colton Orr  Fighting (maj) against  Patrick Kaleta
02:09TOR Colton Orr  Cross checking against  Patrick Kaleta
02:09TOR Colton Orr  Instigator against  Patrick Kaleta
02:09TOR Colton Orr  Misconduct (10 min) against  Patrick Kaleta
02:09TOR Colton Orr  Game misconduct against  Patrick Kaleta
02:09BUF John Scott  Fighting (maj) against  Frazer McLaren
02:09BUF Patrick Kaleta  Fighting (maj) against  Colton Orr
02:09TOR Frazer McLaren  Fighting (maj) against  John Scott
08:32BUF Steve Ott  Unsportsmanlike conduct against  Dion Phaneuf
16:54TOR Mark Fraser  Interference against  Patrick Kaleta
2nd Period
06:42BUF Steve Ott  Slashing against  Mikhail Grabovski
11:48BUF John Scott  Unsportsmanlike conduct against  Phil Kessel
11:48TOR Phil Kessel  Unsportsmanlike conduct against  John Scott
13:30BUF Tyler Myers  Interference against  Nazem Kadri
19:39TOR Clarke MacArthur  Slashing against  Steve Ott
3rd Period
04:57BUF Tyler Ennis  Slashing against  Cody Franson
18:43TOR Nikolai Kulemin  Hi-sticking against  Tyler Ennis
OT Period
shots by period
Team Stats
Power Plays2/41/5
Faceoff Wins3726
Blocked Shots168
Penalty Minutes4220
3D. PhaneufD01-12026:36
4C. FransonD01-22021:30
11J. McClementC00-13020:03
16C. MacArthurL0110219:51
21J. van RiemsdykL00-13017:37
24J. LilesD0000019:21
28C. OrrR0000290:02
36C. GunnarssonD00-10020:16
38F. McLarenL000053:49
39M. FrattinR0003016:04
41N. KuleminL01-10217:28
42T. BozakC10-16019:03
43N. KadriC2118021:27
45M. FraserD00-10217:47
47L. KomarovC000004:42
51J. GardinerD0121024:16
81P. KesselR0203219:27
84M. GrabovskiC1013017:03
34J. Reimer3236.88965:00
3J. LeopoldD00-13021:54
6M. WeberD0002018:02
9S. OttC0103423:00
10C. EhrhoffD1133027:01
12K. PorterC0111014:52
19C. HodgsonC0324023:16
21D. StaffordR00-22016:35
23V. LeinoL00-22019:46
24R. RegehrD00-10018:15
29J. PominvilleR1022024:06
32J. ScottL000073:31
36P. KaletaR000255:53
53M. PysykD00-11016:49
55J. HechtC000307:08
57T. MyersD0012220:24
63T. EnnisC1104224:12
65B. FlynnC0011015:22
82M. FolignoL1011012:29
30R. Miller3034.88264:38