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At the Horn: Oilers 2 - Sabres 3 (OT)

Eichel's overtime penalty shot lifts Sabres to victory

by Chris Ryndak @ChrisRyndak / Sabres.com

Jack Eichel netted the overtime winner on a penalty shot in the Buffalo Sabres' 3-2 victory over the Edmonton Oilers on Thursday at KeyBank Center. 

Eichel drew the penalty shot 1:09 into the extra period and scored on a wrist shot that went high glove side on Oilers goaltender Mike Smith. 

The Sabres captain now holds the franchise record for most overtime goals with seven. According to the NHL Public Relations Department, Eichel is the first player in franchise history to score on a penalty shot in overtime.

Curtis Lazar and Sam Reinhart also scored for Buffalo to erase a two-goal deficit. 

Linus Ullmark made 25 saves to earn his 12th win of the season.

 

What happened

Edmonton struck first with a pair of goals in the first 7 minutes. First, Riley Sheahan scored 5:06 into the contest and then Ryan Nugent-Hopkins found the back of the net through traffic 1:54 later. 

The Sabres cut the deficit to one when Lazar finished a set up by Marcus Johansson 8:30 into the first.

Buffalo tied the game 3:53 into the third period when Zach Bogosian's wrist shot from the point deflected in off Reinhart.   

The Sabres had the better offensive opportunities in the third period, but weren't rewarded for their efforts. They outshot he Oilers 10-3 in the third.

Then Eichel drew the penalty shot in overtime to clinch the extra point. Eichel is 1-for-2 in his career on penalty shots.


What it means

The Sabres are now 18-17-7 on the season and 12-5-3 at home.

With the win, the Sabres have swept the season series with the Oilers for the third time in four seasons. Edmonton won both matchups in the 2018-19 season. The teams haven't split a series since 2013-14, the first season that they resumed facing off twice a year.

Buffalo also improved to 6-2-3 against the Pacific Division in 2019-20, including a 3-0-2 mark at home.

Victor Olofsson, who was named the NHL's Rookie of the Month for the month of December, recorded an assist on Reinhart's goal. He now has 15 points (6+9) in his last 15 games dating back to the beginning of December.

Olofsson exited the game after falling into the end boards on the shift that ended with Reinhart's goal. 

Lazar extended his point streak to three games, tying a career high. He has two goals and an assist during that span. His only other career three-game streak was from March 26 to 29, 2015 (2+1) when he was with Ottawa.

With his goal tonight, Reinhart recorded the 100th goal of his NHL career, and he now has seven points (2+5) in his last six home games.

Johansson now has a point in each of his last three games (1+3).

 

The Sabres have acquired...

Prior to the start of the game, Sabres general manger Jason Botterill acquired forward Michael Frolik from the Calgary Flames for a fourth-round pick in the 2020 NHL Draft (Buffalo had acquired that pick about a half hour earlier in a trade with Montreal for defenseman Marco Scandella). 

Video: JASON BOTTERILL

Read more on Botterill's comments to the media here. 


Roll the highlight film

Here's the walkoff penalty shot:

Video: EDM@BUF: Eichel scores in OT


Coming up

Buffalo hosts the Florida Panthers at 1 p.m., where the team will be celebrating the 1990s as part of the Golden Season. Nearly two dozen alumni including Michael Peca, Brad May, Derek Plante, Jason Dawe and Dave Hannan are expected to attend.

Click here for full details. 

Tickets are on sale now.

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