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Enroth outduels Quick in Sabres' win vs. Kings

by Joe Yerdon

BUFFALO -- Jhonas Enroth picked a good night to get his first shutout of the season.

Enroth made 34 saves and Tyler Ennis scored in the third period to give the Buffalo Sabres a 1-0 win against the Los Angeles Kings at First Niagara Center on Tuesday.

"This was actually one of my easier games," Enroth said. "Everything was pretty controlled and I put myself in a good position and was pretty sharp all the way through."

Not only was the shutout the first of the season for the Sabres, it was the first the Sabres have recorded since a 1-0 win against the Philadelphia Flyers on April 13, 2013. Enroth made 29 saves in that game.

"We came out pretty confident and we wanted to play well and not just go out to play to lose," Enroth said. "It was good."

Enroth was under pressure by the Kings offense throughout the game, but came up big in the third period when he made 14 saves. Enroth made two saves during a Kings power play with 6:52 left in the third and made two more against Kings forward Tyler Toffoli to keep the Kings scoreless.

"The puck was just rolling," Toffoli said. "I was just trying to get something on it. I didn't really get a whole lot on it. On the backhand, it still almost went in but it wasn't good enough."

The Kings led the Sabres in shot attempts by a 70-23 margin.

"We had some really good ones in the first half of the game," Kings coach Darryl Sutter said. "We're playing against, quietly, goalies that are right up there in terms of, I think they're like 10th in the League in save percentage. You've got to bear down on your opportunities. We had some good looks in traffic and didn't finish the job."

Ennis scored four minutes into the third period to give the Sabres a 1-0 lead. With Kings defenseman Robyn Regehr in the penalty box for roughing, Ennis received a pass from Matt Moulson in front of the net and took a wrist shot that beat Kings goalie Jonathan Quick for his eighth goal of the season.

"It's a good feeling when you've got a 1-on-1 with a goalie and you've got the time," Ennis said. "Great pass by Moulson, good entry and I'm glad we put it in."

On the goal, Kings forward Mike Richards left his position in front of the net and pursued Moulson behind Quick's goal. Ennis slipped out front alone where Moulson found him.

"It's a bad play by Mike Richards," Sutter said. "You can't drop off. It's a set play for us. You can't drop off in the corner unless we have full control. You've got to cover the middle of the ice."

The power-play goal was the sixth of the season for the Sabres.

"We did some extra time with them here [Monday] and it was good to get one," Nolan said about the power play. "It's good for your confidence, especially in a game like this. We killed off their power play, got one of ours and it was a 1-0 victory."

The win improved the Sabres' record at home against the Kings to 10-1-0 in the past 11 games.

"You don't want to go into a slugfest with the champion," Nolan said. "They're a big team, they're a heavy team and we know we can't battle pound-for-pound. We thought we'd stick and bob-and-weave and rope-a-dope a little bit and it worked pretty well."

Marian Gaborik returned to the Kings lineup for the first time since Nov. 26. He missed the past four games because of an illness. He played 15:53 and had three shots on goal.

"His game conditioning is an issue as the game goes along, clearly," Sutter said.

Quick made 15 saves. Los Angeles continues its five-game road trip at the Ottawa Senators on Thursday.

"I think it's still a ways off, still a ways off from how we need to play if we want to get our game going and play the way we can," Kings defenseman Matt Greene said. "That's it. There [are] no positives."

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