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game recap

Lehner, Sabres hand Red Wings fifth straight loss

Goalie has 32-save shutout, Buffalo wins second in row

by Joe Yerdon / NHL.com Correspondent

BUFFALO -- The Buffalo Sabres hadn't had a shutout since February, but Robin Lehner and the Sabres defense helped change that against the Detroit Red Wings at KeyBank Center on Tuesday.

 

[WATCH: All Red Wings vs. Sabres highlights]

 

Lehner made 32 saves, and Benoit Pouliot scored to help the Sabres to a 1-0 win.

The Sabres (3-5-2) won their first home game of the season and have won back-to-back games for the first time. The Red Wings (4-5-1) have lost five straight (0-4-1).

"It's a compliment to him that he comes back and plays a really strong game at home," Sabres coach Phil Housley said of Lehner, who allowed four goals in a 5-4 overtime win at the Boston Bruins on Saturday. "He made some really big saves at the right time for us. When we did give up opportunities, it was maybe a little bit of puck management. It's really strong; it's going to boost his confidence."

Video: DET@BUF: Lehner makes a pair of saves on Daley

The shutout was the sixth of Lehner's NHL career and his fourth with the Sabres. It was also the first for either Lehner or Buffalo since he made 23 saves in a 2-0 win against the Colorado Avalanche on Feb. 16, a span of 33 games. He hasn't allowed a goal in his past 91:35.

"I thought we played solid defense today and they helped me out; helped me out on rebounds," Lehner said. "I think we played a solid, good game. We have things we need to get better at, but from the defensive end today I think it was real good."

Jimmy Howard made 31 saves for Detroit.

"I've been harping on this and I need to get our guys to do this more," Red Wings coach Jeff Blashill said. "We need to get more bodies to the net. We look off shots at times because we know the net's not occupied. We have to be way more belligerent about getting bodies to the net so we can get those dirty goals."

Pouliot gave the Sabres a 1-0 lead at 9:45 of the second period with his second goal in as many games. Defenseman Victor Antipin got an assist for his first NHL point. He signed with the Sabres as a free agent out of Russia on May 25.

"I thought we turned up a lot of opportunities, especially Victor," Housley said. "He just takes a shot from a bad angle that finds the net and we jump on the rebound and [Pouliot] puts it in. It's great for him to get his first point."

Video: DET@BUF: Lehner denies Mantha's wrist shot

 

Goal of the game

Pouliot picked up the loose puck after a shot by Antipin and scored on a wraparound. Housley has wanted the Sabres to shoot more, even from bad angles, to try to create goals and said Antipin's shot was a good example of how it's done.

Video: DET@BUF: Pouliot beats Howard with wraparound

 

Save of the game

Lehner made a pad save against Martin Frk with 3:26 left in the second period when Frk skated through the slot and shot a one-timer after a pass from Frans Nielsen. Lehner said he didn't see Frk come down the slot but instead positioned himself based on where Nielsen's pass was headed.

Video: DET@BUF: Lehner extends pad for great save on Frk

 

Highlight of the game

At 8:50 of the third period, Lehner made a quick reaction save after a shot by Red Wings defenseman Trevor Daley deflected off Sabres forward's Jack Eichel's skate toward the net. He then scrambled to stop Frk with the pad in front.

 

They said it

"Obviously we've been playing better than only getting one point out of 10 (in the past five games) but you can't fall back to that either and kind of stay somewhat happy about that. We're still only one point out of 10 possible. The only thing we can do is stick together here, keep going like we're doing tonight. It's going to be a challenge for us in Tampa." -- Red Wings captain Henrik Zetterberg

 

"The game in Boston wasn't like a wake-up call, but it really showed when we play our game we're successful and when we force pucks teams are good, they're going to make you pay. When we play a simple game, we have very skilled guys in here and they're going to take advantage of the opportunities they get. We've got to keep working on the [power play], the [penalty kill], and make them be the game factors for us." -- Sabres goalie Robin Lehner

 

Need to know

Red Wings forward Dylan Larkin hasn't scored a goal in nine games since the season-opening win against the Minnesota Wild. … The Sabres have won consecutive home games against the Red Wings for the first time since they won three straight from Dec. 28, 1988, to Dec. 26, 1989.

 

What's next

Red Wings: At the Tampa Bay Lightning on Thursday (7:30 p.m. ET; SUN, FS-D, NHL.TV)

Sabres: At the Columbus Blue Jackets on Wednesday (8 p.m. ET; NBCSN, NHL.TV)

 

Video: Lehner, Sabres blank Red Wings, 1-0

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