Sabres dropped in Colorado, 3-2 to Avalanche

February 26, 2020 - 7:24 pm

The Buffalo Sabres played catch-up in the goal-scoring department all evening in Denver, Colorado, as the blue and gold were defeated 3-2 by the Avalanche inside the Pepsi Center.

It was a good start to the opening period for the Sabres. At one point, the blue and gold held a 7-1 shot advantage in enemy territory and were playing a physical game and finished their checks all around the ice. Despite the quick jump, the game remained scoreless.

The Avalanche eventually broke the goose egg on the scoreboard with 14:24 gone in the first frame. Colorado began to find their legs after Buffalo jumped out to that 7-1 shooting edge, and the Avalanche responded with the game's next seven shots; the seventh of which found the back of the net.

With Henri Jokiharju in the penalty box for a tripping minor, Colorado captain Gabriel Landeskog beat Carter Hutton to open the scoring, 1-0. It was Landeskog's 17th goal of the season, but Buffalo did not waiver. Moments later, they formulated a response to the home side's opening goal.

Parked in front of the net with 3:39 left in the period, Zemgus Girgensons re-directed a puck past Avalanche netminder Pavel Francouz to even the score at a goal apiece. Girgensons' 12th goal of the campaign marked his third straight game with a point dating back to last Saturday afternoon in Pittsburgh against the Penguins.

The score remained tied until the 7:15 mark of the middle stanza, when Colorado struck again on the man advantage. Rasmus Dahlin sat in the sin bin for slashing, and could only watch as forward Martin Kaut scored his first career goal in the NHL on the powerplay for the Avalanche. Kaut's tally made it 2-1 Colorado as special teams hampered Buffalo for the second time in as many periods.

Just like the first period, though, the Sabres had another answer to an Avalanche score. The response came in a similar fashion to their first goal, as the blue and gold tied the game for the second time with a deflection in front.

With 5:04 left in the second, Jake McCabe let loose a wrist shot from the point that was re-directed in front of Francouz by Curtis Lazar; the forward's fifth goal of the year. It was also Lazar's first time finding twine since Jan. 14 against Buffalo's next opponent, the Vegas Golden Knights.

The score remained even until there was 8:06 left in regulation, when the Avalanche took their third lead of the night. The Sabres had a costly defensive breakdown in their own end in front of Hutton, and cashing in on the opportunity was former Buffalo Sabres forward J.T. Compher. His 10th goal of the season gave Colorado a 3-2 edge as time suddenly became an enemy of Buffalo.

And an enemy it was, as the Sabres were unable to find the equalizer despite a frantic effort in the final 1:30 of the game. With Hutton on the bench, Buffalo deployed an extra attacker and were able to generate several good chances for sniper Victor Olofsson. He was stymied by Francouz multiple times, and the Avalanche prevailed by that 3-2 final score.


Goal Summary:

First Period:

BUF: 16:21 - Zemgus Girgensons (12) (Kyle Okposo, Johan Larsson)
COL: 14:24 - Gabriel Landeskog (17) PPG (J.T. Compher, Nathan Mackinnon)

Second Period:

BUF: 14:56 - Curtis Lazar (5) (Jake McCabe, Michael Frolik)
COL: 7:15 - Martin Kaut (1) PPG (Vladislav Kamenev, Samuel Girard)

Third Period:

COL: 11:56 - J.T. Compher (10) (Joonas Donskoi, Tyson Jost)

Penalty Summary:

First Period:

BUF: 13:30 - Henri Jokiharju (Tripping - 2 min.)
COL: 1:21 - Ryan Graves (Tripping - 2 min.)

Second Period:

BUF: 5:38 - Rasmus Dahlin (Slashing - 2 min.)
COL: 18:47 - Pierre-Edouard Bellemare (Holding - 2 min.)

Third Period:

BUF: 16:13 - Brandon Montour (Hooking - 2 min.)

Strategic Financial Solutions Complete Stats Of The Game

Strategic Financial Solutions Stats of the Game:

Shots on Goal:

BUF: 33 (11, 9, 13)
COL: 34 (9, 11, 14)

BUF: Carter Hutton - 31 saves
COL: Pavel Francouz - 31 saves

Power Plays:

BUF: Carter Hutton - 31 saves
COL: Pavel Francouz - 31 saves

Power Plays:

BUF: 0 for 2 (0%)
COL: 2 for 3 (66.7%)

Three Stars:

1. Martin Kaut - COL
2. J.T. Compher - COL
3. Tyson Jost - COL

What's Next:

The road trip continues on Friday night, Feb. 28 when the Sabres take on the Golden Knights in Las Vegas, Nevada. Face-off inside T-Mobile Arena is set for just after 10 p.m. EST, and the Paul William Beltz Pre-Game Show with Brian Koziol kicks off at 9 p.m. on WGR.

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