Winnipeg 2 – Buffalo 1
Tuesday, February 19, 2013
First Niagara Center
Andrew Ladd’s second-period goal proved to be the game winner as the Winnipeg Jets came into Buffalo on Tuesday and handed the Sabres a 2-1 loss in front of 19,070 disgruntled paying customers at First Niagara Center. Buffalo (6-10-1) has now lost two in a row, and four of its last five. The win snapped a three-game losing streak for the Jets (6-8-1), with tonight’s game being the first stop on a season-high five-game road trip.
Jason Pominville scored Buffalo’s only goal, and Ryan Miller made 26 saves in the loss. Buffalo was scoreless on three power play attempts, and denied Winnipeg on their only man-advantage situation in the first period. Ondrej Pavelec stopped 29 Buffalo shots to earn the victory.
For the second game in a row, the opposition got on the board in the opening minute of play. Evander Kane dug the puck out from behind the net, and his backhand pass found Bryan Little all alone in front. Little’s 18-foot wrister from the top of the slot on the game’s first shot at exactly the one-minute mark staked the Jets to an early 1-0 lead. The assist extended Kane’s point streak to four games.
Winnipeg went ahead 2-0 at 5:46 of the second period when Nathan Gerbe’s attempted breakout pass to Pominville was picked off by Ron Hainsey just inside the Buffalo blueline. Hainsey tipped it ahead to Ladd, and his spinning wristshot appeared to handcuff Miller for his team-leading eighth goal of the season.
But as time ticked down in the second period, Pominville took it upon himself to get the home side on the board. The Sabres’ captain raced down the left wing after picking up a loose puck at the Buffalo blueline, cut to the slot and uncorked a quick shot to the far side of the Jets’ net over Pavelec’s outstretched glove hand with just 22 seconds remaining in the period. It was Pominville’s seventh goal of the season, and his first in seven games.
BEHIND THE NUMBERS
Cody Hodgson’s assist on Pominville’s goal extended his point streak to three games (2+1), and he now has 12 points (4+8) in his last 11 games… The Sabres have now lost consecutive home games in regulation for the first time since Feb 11/14, 2012… It was also Buffalo’s first home loss to the Jets/Thrashers franchise since Oct 17, 2009… This was the 49th all-time meeting between the Jets and Sabres; Buffalo is 21-17-11; 14-7-4 at home.
Jordan Leopold was a healthy scratch for the first time in his three years with the Sabres… Rookie Mikhail Grigorenko was scratched for the second consecutive game… Andrej Sekera missed his second game with a lower-body injury… Ville Leino (hip, 17 games) is the only Sabre currently on IR.
BUFFALO’S REAL-TIME STATS LEADERS
Time on Ice: Christian Ehrhoff, 26:21
Shots: Cody Hodgson, 6
Blocked Shots: Brennan/Sulzer, 3
Hits: Kaleta/Ott, 6
Faceoff Wins: Hodgson, 10
Total Faceoffs: Hodgson, 16 (10-6)
BUFFALO’S RECORD WHEN
Opponent scores first: 1-7-1
Trailing after the first period: 0-4-0
Trailing after the second period: 2-6-1
Outshooting by opponent: 2-2-1
Overall: 8/62, 12.9%
Home: 7/32, 21.9%
Overall: 55/68, 80.9%
Home: 21/29, 72.4%
* Thursday @ Toronto, 7 p.m.
* Saturday vs. NY Islanders, 7 p.m.
* Tuesday @ Tampa Bay, 7:30 p.m.