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NOTEBOOK: THREE IN A ROW

Friday, 02.11.2011 / 3:32 PM / News
By Rob Crean  - Public Relations Director
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NOTEBOOK: THREE IN A ROW
The Sabres extended a winning streak to three games for the first time this season with Thursday’s overtime victory over Florida, a win that also put them just two points behind eighth-place Carolina for the final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference.  The win, which came courtesy of a blast by Tyler Myers that beat Panthers goalie Thomas Vokoun with 4.5 seconds remaining in overtime, improves the Sabres’ record over the last 17 games to 12-4-1.

AP Photo/Wilfredo Lee
The three-game winning streak has shown Buffalo’s ability to win various types of games.  First, they beat Toronto last Saturday by a 6-2 score in a game where Buffalo held the lead throughout and continued to build it.  On Tuesday in Tampa Bay, the Sabres rallied from a 3-1 deficit by scoring six straight goals en route to a 7-4 victory.  Then, Thursday night in Florida, they gave up a pair of one-goal leads before finishing the job in overtime.

“I think the players have been able to lock into a pretty good style,” Head Coach Lindy Ruff said of the team’s recent success.  “We’ve been able to win games different ways, which is important. You’ve got to win the tight ones, you’re going to have to win some when you have to be able to come back from behind, and when you have a lead we’re going to have to be able to protect the lead and be able to win those games.”

2/11 - Lindy Ruff Interview

Despite stringing together three wins for the first time all year and moving up in the standings, goaltender Ryan Miller said it’s important to stay focused on only the next game.  The Sabres have a tough road ahead with four games in a six-day stretch, beginning Sunday when they host the Islanders.

“We kind of have our fate in our own hands a lot more now than we did even two weeks ago,” said Miller.  “The trick is to keep playing one night at a time like we did to get ourselves back in contention and just keep grinding.”

While the Sabres have moved back into contention, they are still on the outside of the playoff picture looking in, and Drew Stafford said the team is only concerned about winning games and not what the teams around them do.

“We don’t really look at the standings too much,” said Stafford.  “We’re just worried about how we’re playing.  We’re not worried about other teams and where they’re crawling up the standings. We’re worried about us.”



Thursday night’s win came in Ryan Miller’s 30th consecutive start, leaving him four shy of tying his career-high.  During the current streak, Miller has led the Sabres to a record of 18-9-2 with a 2.71 goals against average and a .915 save percentage.

Miller was given the day off from practice on Friday and said he had a conversation with Ruff regarding the goaltender’s workload.

“Lindy and I tried to look a little bit ahead today and today was a day he said to take some time off the ice, so I can get a workout in, I can watch video, I can relax a little bit and start prepping for our game Sunday,” he said.

2/11 - Ryan Miller Interview

In addition to hosting the Islanders on Sunday, the upcoming schedule also includes games at Montreal on Tuesday, home against Toronto on Wednesday, home versus St. Louis on Friday and home against Washington next Sunday. 



Montador
Ruff told members of the media on Friday that defenseman Steve Montador, who has missed the last two games, has concussion symptoms and is still being evaluated. Ruff did not put a timetable on Montador’s return.

Patrick Kaleta has played just three times since suffering a hand injury on Dec. 28 but is nearing a return to the lineup.

“Pat will get a good skate in today and tomorrow and we’ll make a decision, but would really like to get him back in,” said Ruff.

SCHEDULE

HOME
AWAY
PROMOTIONAL

STANDINGS

EASTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 p - BOS 82 54 19 9 261 177 117
2 y - PIT 82 51 24 7 249 207 109
3 x - TBL 82 46 27 9 240 215 101
4 x - MTL 82 46 28 8 215 204 100
5 x - NYR 82 45 31 6 218 193 96
6 x - PHI 82 42 30 10 236 235 94
7 x - CBJ 82 43 32 7 231 216 93
8 x - DET 82 39 28 15 222 230 93
9 WSH 82 38 30 14 235 240 90
10 NJD 82 35 29 18 197 208 88
11 OTT 82 37 31 14 236 265 88
12 TOR 82 38 36 8 231 256 84
13 CAR 82 36 35 11 207 230 83
14 NYI 82 34 37 11 225 267 79
15 FLA 82 29 45 8 196 268 66
16 BUF 82 21 51 10 157 248 52

STATS

2013-2014 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
C. Hodgson 72 20 24 -26 44
T. Ennis 80 21 22 -25 43
D. Stafford 70 16 18 -19 34
C. Ehrhoff 79 6 27 -27 33
C. Stewart 63 15 11 0 26
C. Conacher 79 7 19 1 26
T. Myers 62 9 13 -26 22
Z. Girgensons 70 8 14 -6 22
M. Foligno 74 7 12 -17 19
J. McBain 69 6 11 -13 17
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
M. Neuvirth 4 8 2 .921 2.78
J. Enroth 4 17 5 .911 2.82