The Buffalo Sabres found themselves behind the eight ball right away Thursday night with some unfortunate injury news before the puck even dropped on their game against the Philadelphia Flyers.
Captain Jack Eichel was announced as a scratch after warmups due to an upper-body injury, ending his NHL-leading point streak at 17 games. He ended up one game short of tying Gilbert Perreault's franchise-record 18-game point streak that was set back in 1971-72.
Eichel recorded 16 goals and 31 points during the streak, which began on Nov. 16.
The Flyers then scored three goals in the first period and three in the second on their way to a 6-1 victory at Wells Fargo Center.
The Sabres also lost forwards Johan Larsson and Evan Rodrigues to injury over the course of the game.
Victor Olofsson scored on the power play with 8:25 remaining in regulation to end Carter Hart's shutout bid.
Carter Hutton made 23 saves. The Sabres were outshot 29-17.
Eichel participated in the morning skate and pregame warmups, but when the lineup cards were submitted, he was listed as a scratch.
The Flyers then got off to a hot start. Mikhail Vorobyev was credited with the first goal of the game 6:56 in when his shot deflected in off a Buffalo stick.
Then, tied up in front, James van Riemsdyk, forced the puck into the back of the net with 4:28 remaining. Sabres coach Ralph Krueger challenged for goaltender interference, but the call stood and Buffalo was then assessed a penalty for delay of game.
On the ensuing power play, Philadelphia made it 3-0 when Matt Niskanen finished off a good passing play with 2:55 left in the first.
Philadelphia added three goals in the second period in quick succession - 4:07 to be precise.
The Flyers scored again on the power play at the 8:20 mark of the second period. Ivan Provorov tallied five seconds into the man advantage to put the Flyers ahead 4-0. Then at the 9:22 mark, Tyler Pitlick scored and at 12:27, van Riemsdyk's power-play shot deflected in for his second of the game to make it 6-0.
Olofsson's goal came 11:35 into the third period.
Larsson's last shift came 3:12 into the second while Rodrigues left the game after blocking a shot 3:08 into the third.
What it means
Buffalo is now 16-13-7 on the season and 6-10-4 on the road.
Eichel's point streak will stand tied for second-best in Sabres history. Dave Andreychuk had two 17-game point streaks, which ran from Dec. 31, 1991 to Feb. 4, 1992 and from Oct. 18 to Nov. 14, 1992.
It's the first game he's missed all season.
Olofsson scored his 15th goal of the season, and his ninth on the power play. Olofsson has now recorded 23 points (9+14) in his last 21 games.
Roll the highlight film
Here's Olofsson's power-play goal:
Video: BUF@PHI: Olofsson scores PPG on redirection
The Sabres return home to host the Los Angeles Kings on Saturday. It's a 1 p.m. faceoff with pregame coverage on MSG starting at 12:30 p.m. The game can be heard on 930 WBEN.
It's a Kids Day Game, so check out special ticket offers here.