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Sharpen Up: October 22, 2018

Here's what you need to know on Monday

by Chris Ryndak @ChrisRyndak /

The Sabres are now 5-4-0 with 10 points and sit in the second Wild Card spot after a 4-2 win over the Anaheim Ducks last night. The victory closed out a five-game West Coast road trip, on which Buffalo finished 3-2-0, bringing home six of a possible 10 points.

Here's what you need to know.


About last night

Video: Ristolainen pots game-winner as Sabres top Ducks

After a solid win on Saturday against the Los Angeles Kings (that included a Jeff Skinner hat trick), the Sabres were able to follow up that effort on Sunday against Anaheim.

From the Lexus Postgame Report…

For the Buffalo Sabres to finish their five-game road trip over .500, they needed to do something they hadn't done yet this season: come from behind to win.

The outcomes of the Sabres' first eight games reflected which team scored first. They were 4-0-0 when they tallied the opening goal, 0-4-0 when they didn't. When Kiefer Sherwood scored to give the Anaheim Ducks a 2-0 lead on Sunday, they knew they had to buck the trend.

Video: POSTGAME: Okposo

Video: Risto talks about winning in Anaheim

"It didn't matter," alternate captain Kyle Okposo said. "We knew we were controlling the play. We had the edge. We just kept going."

The Sabres tied the game within four minutes of Sherwood's goal, on the strength of a power-play marker from Okposo and Jeff Skinner's fourth goal in as many periods. Rasmus Ristolainen added another in the third period, which stood as the game-winner in a 4-2 victory. 

Buffalo stayed the course all the way through to the final minute, when Johan Larsson snatched the puck away from the goal line to prevent a tying goal and Patrik Berglund scored into an empty net with 16.1 on the clock.

Video: POSTGAME: Skinner

Video: POSTGAME: Housley

Video: POSTGAME: Larsson

"They obviously deserved to win this game, just the way they played," Housley said. "But I think it's a credit to our leadership group who are keeping our guys together and keeping them as a tight group. They talk a lot in that room, they say the right things and they're leading by example.

"It's a feather in their cap, the way they've worked, especially being down 2-0 in a tough building. They just kept working."

Tweet from @SabresPR: Jeff Skinner's goal tonight gives him 10 points (6G, 4A) in his last eight games against the Ducks, including at least a point in each of the last six.He leads all Sabres with seven points (5G, 2A) during this road trip.

Read more about Jeff Skinner's productive trip and more here.

Coming up

The Sabres flew home after the game and they have a scheduled off-day today. They'll return to practice tomorrow as they get set for a match against the Montreal Canadiens on Thursday at KeyBank Center. Tickets are on sale now. 

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