Photo: Timothy T. Ludwig - USA TODAY Sports

From the Locker Room: Sabres-Avalanche

Casey Nelson, Ryan O'Reilly, Rasmus Ristolainen and Phil Housley address the media after the 5-4 loss to Colorado

February 11, 2018 - 6:24 pm

A day after their Saturday night road victory over the Boston Bruins, the Buffalo Sabres were back on home ice to host the Colorado Avalanche in KeyBank Center. Sunday was the first game that the Sabres would be fairing without top-scorer Jack Eichel, who suffered a high-ankle sprain in the first period against the Bruins that will sideline the 2015 second overall draft pick for the forseeable future.

Buffalo was dropped on this night in a wacky affair by a final score of 5-4. Three short-handed goals were scored in the process, including Casey Nelson's first goal in the NHL. Sabres center, and former Avalanche draftee, Ryan O'Reilly was a standout as well, notching three points including the 400th of his career.

Go inside the locker room to hear from Casey Nelson, Ryan O'Reilly, Rasmus Ristolainen and Phil Housley following the loss:


Casey Nelson:

On his first NHL goal: "The puck got up to me and I saw I had some room. Usually, I don't do that on the penalty kill, but I saw the space and took it. I kind of just threw it in there and got a lucky bounce."

Too little, too late: "We made a good push but that's a tough team. Especially when it's 6-on-5 there. It's almost like their penalty killers, you could say, where they're third in league I believe before this game. So yeah, too little too late."



Ryan O'Reilly:

Sloppy: "We made too many turnovers. We fed their transition. They got ahead and it was tough to get back. We got away from our game plan. I have a couple of errors early too. I have to set a better example."

On the lacking powerplay missing Jack: "He seems to always break [the puck] in easy. Not having that was a little different. It took us a bit. Not having a chance to practice the powerplay without him is tough. We weren't at our best and that's on us."



Rasmus Ristolainen:

Loss of confidence on a rough night?: "No, you can always keep your confidence. I know what I can do. It's not about that."

Respects Housley for his decision to drop him off top D pairing: "I played bad and that's coach's decision. I have to respect that."



Phil Housley:

Failure to launch: "I think there were some passengers tonight that weren't real prepared to play the game."

On Ristolainen's struggles: "I think it could be a preparation problem, as well as confidence. He has to refocus on getting his game back."

O'Reilly's strong showing: "Ryan had a terrific game. You could see he was prepared, he was willing to go to the hard areas and got rewarded for that. He was terrific in the faceoff circle once again. He did everything that he could do to try to help us win a game."


02-11 Sabres-Avalanche Post-Game Show with Brian Koziol

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