Game Recap

Flyers 4, Sabres 3, SO

Wednesday, 08.06.2014 / 4:52 AM

Associated Press

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Flyers 4, Sabres 3, SO
Philadelphia Flyers 4, Buffalo Sabres 3

BUFFALO, N.Y. (AP) - Daniel Briere had plenty to smile about after scoring the clinching shootout goal in Philadelphia's 4-3 comeback win over the Buffalo Sabres.

The forward was still celebrating in helping the Flyers snap a 10-game skid when he learned his team had bolstered its banged-up lineup by acquiring high-scoring Vinny Prospal in a trade with Tampa Bay.

"That's great," Briere said. "We've been struggling lately. It just felt like things are starting to turn. ... We come off the ice and have a player like Vinny Prospal to our team: That's a lot of good news today."

The deal was struck a day before the NHL's trade deadline. The Flyers sent the Lightning minor-league defenseman Alexandre Picard and a conditional pick in the 2009 draft.

The trade capped the Flyers' best day in weeks, with their last win a 3-2 victory against Atlanta on Feb. 5.

Prospal, an 11-year veteran, who has a career-best 29 goals this season, joins a team depleted by injuries. Leading scorer Mike Richards will miss at least three weeks after tearing his hamstring last weekend. And Philadelphia is already minus star forward Simon Gagne (concussion) and defenseman Derian Hatcher (knee).

Then there was Briere's decisive goal, scored against his former team. It capped a three-goal rally that helped end an 0-8-2 slump - matching the longest in franchise history - and pushed Philadelphia into a tie with the Sabres for the Eastern Conference's eighth and final playoff spot. Philly has one more victory.

With a chorus of boos raining down on the Sabres' former co-captain, Briere skated in on Ryan Miller, making a series of back-and-forth moves before stuffing the puck just inside the right post.

"All I was thinking was, `This is perfect. I can't be in a better position,"' said Briere, who's been booed recently in Philadelphia, blamed for the team's struggles. "I think we just got rewarded a little bit tonight for the way things have been going against us lately."

R.J. Umberger, who capped the Flyers' comeback with 7:15 left in regulation, Jeff Carter and Scott Hartnell also scored for Philadelphia.

Things couldn't have gone much worse for the Sabres, who squandered a three-goal lead for the first time since a 6-5 overtime loss against Toronto on March 15, 2004.

Besides the loss, it's possible the game was Brian Campbell's last for Buffalo, with the Sabres anticipated to attempt to trade the two-time All-Star defenseman before the deadline.

"Do I feel I might get traded? Yeah," said Campbell, who's in the final year of his contract. "Do I know 100 percent? No."

Campbell told reporters earlier in the day he did not plan to counter the Sabres' last offer. The Sabres haven't ruled out trading Campbell.

Miller was unhappy with the loss, but equally upset in blaming the media for creating a distraction regarding Campbell's uncertain future.

"It's just been way too much of a circus around Brian. It's over tomorrow, and we move on," Miller said.

Philadelphia Flyers left winger Patrick Thoresen, front, checks Buffalo Sabres center Derek Roy at center ice during the first period in Buffalo, NY, on Monday, Feb. 25, 2008.  (AP Photo/Don Heupel)

As for the loss, Miller said: "It's annoying. It's a team we need to beat and a team we should have beat tonight."

Jason Pominville had a goal and an assist, and Derek Roy and Clarke MacArthur also scored for Buffalo, which fell to 2-4 in its past six games.

The Sabres inexplicably couldn't put a game away in which they built a 3-0 lead on Pominville's goal 14:16 into the first period.

Umberger capped the comeback with a power-play goal shortly after Pominville was penalized for delay of game. From the right circle, Umberger snapped a shot in off the far post behind Miller, who was screened by Philadelphia's Mike Knuble, who finished with two assists.

Philadelphia goalie Martin Biron also beat his former team after the Sabres traded him to the Flyers last year. Biron made 26 saves through overtime, and earned the win by stopping Tim Connolly and Derek Roy, who lost control of the puck as he shot, in the shootout.

"I got lucky tonight," said Biron, who won for the first time in seven starts (1-5-1). "We came back, fought and battled. But we have to realize it can't be like that all the time."

Notes: Sabres C Jochen Hecht (leg) missed his second straight game. ... Flyers D Kimmo Timonen was disappointed but not surprised that former teammate Peter Forsberg chose to sign with Colorado rather than Philadelphia. "When I talked to him a couple of months ago, he said, `Either us or Colorado,"' Timonen said. "We would've taken him with open arms. ... I'm sure he's going to help Colorado." ... Flyers D Jaroslav Modry left midway through the first period. The team did not provide an update of his status.

scoring summary
1st Period
Derek Roy (24) ASST: Jaroslav Spacek (20)
1 - 0 BUF
Clarke MacArthur (8) ASST: Jason Pominville (39), Tim Connolly (31)
2 - 0 BUF
Jason Pominville (18) ASST: Tim Connolly (32), Jaroslav Spacek (21)
3 - 0 BUF
Jeff Carter (20) ASST: Mike Knuble (19), Randy Jones (22)
3 - 1 BUF
Scott Hartnell (20) ASST: Patrick Thoresen (2)
3 - 2 BUF
2nd Period
3rd Period
PPG - R.J. Umberger (12) ASST: Braydon Coburn (22), Mike Knuble (20)
3 - 3 Tie
OT Period
1T. ConnollyK. Timonen
2A. KotalikJ. Carter
3D. RoyD. Briere
Power Play Stats
Power Plays1/50/4
Power Play %16.4%21.3%
% on Road16.7%21.4%
% at Home16.2%21.3%
League Rank26th8th
penalty summary
1st Period
Jesse Boulerice  Fighting (maj) against  Andrew Peters
Andrew Peters  Fighting (maj) against  Jesse Boulerice
Jesse Boulerice  Slashing against  Jaroslav Spacek
Steve Downie  Interference on goalkeeper against  Ryan Miller
2nd Period
Riley Cote  Tripping against  Adam Mair
Thomas Vanek  Tripping against  R.J. Umberger
Jason Smith  Holding against  Daniel Paille
Adam Mair  Holding against  Braydon Coburn
Jaroslav Spacek  Hooking against  Scottie Upshall
Scottie Upshall  Diving against  Jaroslav Spacek
Henrik Tallinder  Hooking against  Jeff Carter
3rd Period
Ales Kotalik  Hooking against  Randy Jones
Jason Pominville  Delaying Game-Puck over glass
OT Period
goalie stats
Martin Biron
SA: 29TOI: 65:00
Saves: 26EV: 22 - 25
PIM: 0PP: 4 - 4
SV%: .897SH: 0 - 0
Ryan Miller
SA: 35TOI: 65:00
Saves: 32EV: 25 - 27
PIM: 0PP: 5 - 6
SV%: .914SH: 2 - 2