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GOAL OF THE YEAR: FINALS

Tyler Ennis squares off against himself in the finals for the goal of the year.

Thursday, 05.17.2012 / 2:05 PM / News
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GOAL OF THE YEAR: FINALS
Tyler Ennis squares off against himself in the finals for the goal of the year.
Tyler Ennis

If you’re heading to Las Vegas to drop a few bucks at the sports books, here’s the hottest tip you’ll get all weekend: bet on Tyler Ennis.

The speedy Sabres center continues to roll through our “Goal of the Year” showdown bracket, and will now go head-to-head with himself in this weekend’s championship final following a pair of semifinal victories.

"It's an honor to go 'mano a mano' with myself," Ennis said today, barely containing his excitement.

In the first semifinal matchup, Ennis’ pass to himself against the Pittsburgh Penguins on February 19 edged out a sensational solo effort by veteran Thomas Vanek, as he outskated several members of the Florida Panthers on October 29.

But Ennis wasn’t done yet.

Next on Ennis’ radar was Marcus Foligno, but the rookie’s “jump” celebration goal barely got off the ground in this one-sided contest. In the same way that he sliced and diced the Montreal defense on March 12, Ennis took down Foligno in the most lopsided margin of this year’s showdown voting.

Now it’s up to you to decide which of Ennis’s goals will be named the “Goal of the Year” for the Buffalo Sabres. Vote early and often. We’ll have the final results on Monday. And there’s a very good chance that Tyler Ennis will be named the winner.



#1:
TYLER ENNIS VS. PITTSBURGH PENGUINS

Billy Idol may have been dancing with himself back in the 80’s, but Tyler Ennis was passing to himself on February 19 against the Pittsburgh Penguins. The Sabres were up 5-2 on the Pens late in the third period of their only afternoon home game of the season. Buffalo had already torched starter Brent Johnson for three goals in the first 22 minutes, and were now facing Marc-Andre Fleury in the Pittsburgh net. Ville Leino worked the puck along the half wall, and he fed it to Zack Kassian in the corner. Kassian skated towards the net and spotted Ennis in the slot. Ennis used a nifty spin move to get open, and was right next to Pittsburgh’s Paul Martin when he took the pass from Kassian. He then flipped the puck over a sliding Martin, taking his own pass and depositing the puck into the wide open net past a helpless Fleury to close out the scoring in a 6-2 Sabres victory.

#4: TYLER ENNIS VS. MONTREAL CANADIENS

Tyler Ennis makes his second appearance in our “Goals of the Year” showdown bracket, this time courtesy of his sick mitts from a game against the Montreal Canadiens at First Niagara Center on March 12. Trailing the Canadiens 1-0 midway through the game, it took a highlight reel goal from Ennis to tie the score at 11:08 of the second period. After Drew Stafford had forced a Montreal turnover in the neutral zone, he chipped the puck over the Canadiens blueline to Ennis. The speedy center stickhandled his way past a helpless Andrei Markov, and then continued his mastery with a backhand-forehand deke on Habs netminder Petr Budaj that ended with a wrist shot to the far side as he continued skating away from the net. “I just came over the line with speed. I didn't know who it was,” explained Ennis. “I figured he was a little flat-footed. I was originally just going to shoot, but then I saw he was kind of flat-footed so I thought I'd make a little move.”

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