Buffalo Sabres 3, Vancouver Canucks 2 – OT
Stop me if you’ve heard this. The Vancouver Canucks started slowly. The Sabres took the first four shots on goal, created all of the early pressure, and took the lead within in first two minutes. It seemed to take the Canucks about four minutes to find their feet.
The Canucks played somewhat of an uneven game but created the better opportunities as the game moved along. Shots at the midway point of the third period were 26-26.
And oddly enough, it’s #26 who wins it in overtime, as in Rasmus Dahlin, his first career OT winner at :48 seconds.
Entering Action …
— Still no Nils Höglander, missing his third consecutive game with a lower body injury. This is starting to appear groinal.
The Canucks have a day off on Monday and will travel to Denver on Tuesday to start their four-game road gauntlet on Wednesday night against the Colorado Avalanche, the team looking like a very strong contender to repeat as Presidents Trophy champs. Entering action Sunday night they led the NHL with 93 points.
The trip continues with matches against the Minnesota Wild, Dallas Stars, and St. Louis Blues, with four games unfolding over six nights.
We normally don’t bring up the upcoming schedule during game summaries, but Wednesday will be the first game for new Canucks defenceman Travis Dermott, acquired earlier Sunday from the Toronto Maple Leafs.
1st Period 1-0 Buffalo – Casey Mittelstadt (3) – Victor Olofsson, Colin Miller (1:50) Even Strength
2nd Period 1-1 Vancouver – JT Miller (25) – Conor Garland, Luke Schenn (2:31) Even Strength
2nd Period 2-1 Buffalo – Jeff Skinner (24) – Rasmus Dahlin, Casey Mittelstadt (3:55) Even Strength
2nd Period 2-2 Vancouver – Bo Horvat (23) – JT Miller, Quinn Hughes (13:32) Power Play
Overtime 3-2 Buffalo – Rasmus Dahlin (9) – Alex Tuch, Tage Thompson (:48) Even Strength (3 on 3)
With the overtime loss the Vancouver Canucks pick up single point in the standings and find themselves four points out of the second wild card position in the Western Conference with three teams to climb.
Simmer’s Canucks 3 Stars:
3) Bo Horvat – Shifts got better as the game moved along after a slow start. Goal was a beauty. Won big O-zone PP draws, 72% win rate overall.
2) Quinn Hughes – Game leader in ice time. Rarely not eligible for this list. Assist. Finished with a game high 26:13 time on ice.
1) JT Miller – Goal, assist, and takes over stretches of play when he’s feeling it.