Game Recap: Skinner scores 30th, but Hurricanes edge Sabres

Carolina wins six in their past seven games.

Photo by Gregg Forwerck/NHLI via Getty Images

The Buffalo Sabres (23-15-6) are looking for any kind of a streak since tying a franchise record by winning ten games in a row earlier this season. Coming off a game on Tuesday, where they blew the New Jersey Devils out of the water, with an offensive explosion in the second period, even a two-game winning streak would satisfy some doubters, labeling the Sabres as a team that “come back down to earth.”

Micheal Ferland, and Justin Williams each scored for the Carolina Hurricanes (21-18-5) and Sebastioan Aho scored twice and Curtis McElhinney made 30 saves beating the Sabres in Raleigh on Friday night.

Jeff Skinner scored his 30th goal of the season, and Carter Hutton made 26 saves for Buffalo, which is 3-6-1 in its past 10 games.

Carolina has one six of their last seven games and are 7-3 in their last 10 games.

Skinner, Jason Pominville and Kyle Okposo scored for Buffalo, while Carter Hutton made 20 saves.

Period 1

Half way through the first period neither team is adding any real pressure. Shots are split even 6-6 with 10:42 remaining.

Ferland scores his 13th of the year bye what looked like a fluky goal, bouncing off the top of the net, then off of Marco Sandella’s stick into his own net, to open the scoring in the game, making it 1-0 Carolina.

“I just tried throwing it on net,” Ferland said. “I didn’t want to get it deflected. It was a good bounce.”

Sabres applied some pressure in the last five minutes of the period, but Carolina has done a good job in the neutral zone not allowing odd man rushes and breaking up passes.

Sabres go on the power play with 28.6 seconds remaining and it’s Skinner that pick’s one out of the air for his 30th goal of the season.

“It’s nice to contribute, get an early power-play one there,” said Skinner, who was traded from Carolina on Aug. 2. “We maybe gave them a few too many rushes than we should have.”

For more than 19 minutes in this period, it appeared all the pressure was applied by Carolina, but the period ends tied at 1-1.

Carolina Buffalo
Shots 12 9
Hits 17 6
Takeaways 7 3
Giveaways 7 1
Blocked Shots 5 3

Period 2

Carolina makes it 2-1 going around Tage Thompson and scoring blocker side high.

Pominville, ties it up with a one-timer from the slot area assisted by Evan Rodriques, making it 2-2 with five minutes into the period.

“It’s always nice to contribute offensively, but honestly I’m more worried about trying to win and get to where we want to be,” Pominville said. “But it was nice to get rewarded.”

Less than a minute later, Carolina takes the lead back with a backhand from the corner that goes off defensmen Rasmus Dahlin’s skate.

Carolina swarmed the Buffalo net and scores five-hole on Hutton 12:27 into the second period.

The Canes are throwing pucks on net, which is working as three goals have been scored off a Sabres defenseman with over 6 minutes to play in the second period.

Johan Larsson and Justin Faulk get into a little scrap. With Faulk dropping Larsson to the ice ending the scrap pretty quickly.

Pominville ends up on the line with Skinner and Sam Reinhart to end period 2.

Period ends 4-2 Carolina.

Carolina Buffalo
Shots 11(20) 8(20)
Hits 25 12
Takeaways 12 4
Giveaways 14 5
Blocked Shots 10 7

Period 3

Pominville misses a one-timer opportunity on the McElhinney’s doorstep.

Sabres adding the pressure about eight minutes into the period and go on the power play as a result. Sabres are 1-3 on the power play in the game so far.

Hutton makes a huge save to keep it a two-goal game at the half way point through the third period.

Rodriques cut through the middle for a quality shot-on-goal, aiming at five-hole, with 7:50 remaining.

It was Rodriques again with a quality shot right from the slot skating from behind the net, but McElhinney scoops it up for the faceoff with over five minutes remaining in the third.

Larsson drove to the net with Okposo throwing the puck at the net from the corner boards along the goal line, making it 3-4 with over three minutes left.

McElhinney has to scramble and lay down to make a save with 2:03 left in regulation.

The Sabres net is empty at 2:03 left.

The puck barely misses the empty net for an icing with 1:29 left.

Carolina will hold on for the win defeating Buffalo for their seventh straight time.

“Tough breaks, for sure, but to me we gave up too much. I think we’ve got to clean up defensively to win more games consistently. It was nice to see our fight-back,” said Pominville.

Carolina Buffalo
Shots 10(30) 13(33)
Hits 38 11
Takeaways 16 6
Giveaways 17 7
Blocked Shots 11 11

Photo by Gregg Forwerck/NHLI via Getty Images

Carolina out works Buffalo for the majority of this game and never trailed crusing to a win after losing the night before against the Tampa Bay Lightning.

“We were very fortunate,” Carolina coach Rod Brind’Amour said. “We didn’t play well at all, but we played better as the game went on. We played hard, but execution wasn’t good and we got a couple breaks.”

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By |2019-01-12T19:35:33+00:00January 12th, 2019|

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