It may not have been the start the Buffalo Sabres were hoping for, losing the season opener to the New York Islanders 6-4 Friday night at HSBC Arena, but there were some elements of the game that may have been bigger than the score.
The Sabres raised the first Presidents’ Trophy banner in franchise history for the best record in the 2006-07 season. Buffalo finished 53-22-7 last year with 113 points.
"I think it's special," Lindy Ruff said following practice Friday. "Last year was a good year for our team... overall to have the season we had was something special."Derek Roy
continued his scoring streak from preseason, adding a goal for the Sabres in the second period off a feed from Maxim Afinogenov. Roy collected 11 points in four preseason games this year.
Jaroslav Spacek was the only Sabre to add two points in the game with a goal and an assist. His goal at 2:56 into the period was the first for Sabres in the 2007-08 season. The veteran defenseman scored 21 points in 65 games last year.Drew Stafford
wasted no time trying to fill the voids left by departed co-captains Chris Drury and Daniel Briere. Stafford scored late in the first period to beat Rick DiPietro with 1:41 remaining.
The game marked the first time that Buffalo has lost in October when they fell to the New Jersey Devils 3-2 Oct. 28, 2005. The Sabres were 10-0-1 in 2006-07 in October.
The Sabres will complete the home-and-home series when they face the Islanders Saturday, 7 p.m. at the Nassau Coliseum.