Krejci, although a participant in the warmup, is a late scratch. He is replaced in lineup by Matt Beleskey. Not ideal. The Bruins find some offensive zone rythm, getting a few shots through to Lehner. In a later sequence Dobby does his Tim Thomas impersonation getting caught well outside the crease and getting bailed out by who else, Zdeno Chara. A little bit of luck that the Bruins didn’t fall down by a goal two minutes into game.
Nothing doing for the next five minutes or so, until Pasta is fed a pass on a breakaway from the bench that he just misses in front of him. At the halfway mark the SOG are 5 for Bruins, 3 for Sabres. Largely uneventful [period played entirely at 5v5.
On a zone entry led largely by Brad Marchand, Tim Schaller manages to get the puck on Lehner, where Pasta cleans up the rebound. 1-0 Bruins with six and a half left in the first period. Assists to Schaller & McAvoy. Say, that Pasta guy is pretty good at hockey, huh?
Pretty nice sequence from David Pastrnak & Tim Schaller pic.twitter.com/o16cw1n2zm— Pete Blackburn (@PeteBlackburn) October 21, 2017
Matt Tennyson takes an interference penalty against Agostino and puts the Bruins on PP with 4:57 left in period. Bruins to the PP where Marchand makes them pay literally in the first 1-2 seconds with an unassisted backhander that bounces off Lehner and in. 2-0 good guys.
The Sabres don’t learn their lesson, as Evander Kane takes a slashing penalty almost immediately afterwards. The Bruins control the pace and have sustained offensive zone pressure on PP but aren’t able to score. End of the first with SOG 13 to 6 in Bruins favor, Bruins up 2-0.
Andddd it’s 3-0 Bruins only 37 (yes 37) seconds in on Marchand’s second of the night. Assists to Bjork and McAvoy.
Kenny Agostino takes a slashing penalty to put Sabres on the PP at 18:31 of 2nd period. The power play is short lived as Okposo takes a holding penalty in the Bruins zone with less than half a minute left on Sabres PP. Bruins to the abbreviated power play! The Sabres noticeably ratchet up the physicality a notch, landing some good hits along boards. PP ends without any major success.
Not much going on until 8 minutes in where Schaller coughs up puck in defensive zone and Pominville buries it with the assist to Ryan O’Reilly. 3-1 Bruins.
Sabres seem to get a jump from this, landing a few more shots on/around goal. Dobby still doesn’t look very comfortable, bobbling the puck on a few occasions.
And make it 4-1 Bruins. Pasta from just outside the crease, assists to Nash and Krug.
Sabres make it interesting with a goal with 3:49 left in period, Jack Eichel assisted by Scandella & Bailey.
Time winds down on middle frame with the Sabres closing SOG gap, 21 Sabres, 25 Bruins. This Sabres team has some scorers, Bruins and Dobby need to have a clean period in the third.
Sabres come out fairly strong getting a few good shots/chances on Dobby, but he manages to keep them from inching closer. Sabres take SOG lead by the 15 minute mark, where they also lead in hits department, 26 to 23. Bruins have been noticeably less physical, as playing with a lead tends to happen.
Sabres are dictating the pace, outhitting and out shooting the Bruins, who are clearly playing like a team with a two goal lead. With a sustained offensive pressure the Sabres score to make it a one goal game on a play that was arguably offsides. Bruce decides not to challenge so the goal stands. Goal goes to former Bruin Pouliot with assists to Reinhart and McCabe. Why, Benoit, why?!
From here the two teams exchange chances and some shoves but nothing major from either team. Sabres lead in SOG at 32 to 29. Carlo takes an Interference penalty with 4 minutes left in final frame. Not ideal.
Onto the Sabres PP, Dobby makes some ugly saves until the Bruins can clear, effectively killing the PP. The score stands at 4-3 as clock ticks down to 2 minutes. While the Bruins kill the penalty, Dobby lets in a soft dribbler from a Kane shot past the goal line and overtime is looking likely. Not sure what Krug is doing on defense here.
The clock winds down and the Bruins are headed to their first overtime period of the new season.
Deep breaths andddd prime scoring chance for the Sabres almost immeditaly but Dobby and his D do what they have to to keep it tied. Back and forth action for both teams, with some close calls. Sabres shoot wide of net on two straight sequences as Bruins get hemmed in defensive zone. for what feels like an eternity.
The Sabres are relentless and score a goal in traffic after a long sequence, leading to Krug snapping his stick in frustration. Khudobin appeals for goaltender interference and the goal is reviewed.
The refs determine Torey Krug pushes Sabres player into Dobby, therefore good goal. Bruins lose what should have been an easy 2 points in overtime.