Sabres roar back for 4-3 OT win over Los Angeles

Jeff Skinner plays the role of hero again with the overtime winner

Pat Malacaro
December 11, 2018 - 7:07 pm

Photo: Kevin Hoffman - USA TODAY Sports


The Buffalo Sabres scored twice in the third period, and Jeff Skinner scored in overtime to give Buffalo a 4-3 come from behind win over the Los Angeles Kings on Tuesday night at KeyBank Center.

Jake Muzzin's goal  just over six minutes into the game gave the Kings a 1-0 lead over Buffalo. The goal is the second of the season for Muzzin, and was assisted by Anze Kopitar and Alex Iafallo.

The Sabres would answer back later in the period, thanks to Zemgus Girgensons, making it 1-1 with just over six minutes remaining in the opening period. The veteran forward was falling to the ice as his shot beat Cal Peterson to tie the game. The score was unassisted.

Both teams had power play chances negated by minors of their own, creating a 4-on-4 situation. Early in the frame, Sam Reinhart was called for high sticking while the blue and gold were on the man advantage. Later in the first, the Kings had too many men on the ice, canceling out a Vladimir Sobotka minor for slashing.

Buffalo out-shot Los Angeles 16-10 in the opening period. Linus Ullmark made nine saves, including several on quality scoring chances for the Kings at times in the first period.

A fortuitous bounce for the Kings helped the visitors regain the lead, 2-1. Matt Luff scored less than a minute into the second period when he knocked the puck down from a Muzzin backhand pass from center ice. Rasmus Dahlin could not stop Luff, who beat Ullmark on the shot.

The blue and gold did a good job on the penalty kill as they were whistled for back-to-back penalties in the second, giving Los Angeles nearly four straight minutes of power play time. Kyle Okposo and Nathan Beaulieu were the players called for minors.

Los Angeles extended their lead to two goals, 3-1, partway through the middle stanza after Adrian Kempe used a low-lying wrist shot that found the back of the net. Casey Mittelstadt was trying to pry the puck loose, but Kempe was able to keep control and score his fifth goal of the season. Brendan Leipsic and Derek Forbot were credited with the assists.

Jack Eichel scored early in the third thanks to a power play opportunity. The captain unleashed a wrist shot into the top corner of the net, cutting Buffalo's deficit to 3-2 in the final frame. Rasmus Ristolainen and Skinner assisted on the goal.

A puck off the skate of Johan Larsson helped the blue and gold draw even with the Kings, 3-3, midway through the third period. Lawrence Pilut took the shot from the point that went off of Larsson for his second goal of the season. Pilut and Evan Rodrigues were given the assists on the game-tying goal.

Jeff Carter was called for tripping late in the third period, giving Buffalo a chance at their first lead of the night. However, Los Angeles was able to kill off the minor penalty before the end of regulation. Fantenberg was called for holding with four seconds to go in the third, giving the Sabres a 4-on-3 start to overtime.

The second power play goal of the game for Buffalo came in OT, and gave the team the win 4-3. Skinner was able to capitalize on a loose puck beside the net. Ristolainen and Eichel assisted on the game-winner.


Goal Summary:

First Period:

BUF: 13:26 - Zemgus Girgensons (3) (unassisted)
LA: 6:11- Jake Muzzin (2) (Anze Kopitar, Alex Iafallo)

Second Period:

BUF: none
LA: 0:52 - Matt Luff (6) (Jake Muzzin); 12:55 - Adrian Kempe (5) (Brendan Leipsic, Derek Forbort)

Third Period:

BUF: 3:47 - Jack Eichel (10) PPG (Rasmus Ristolainen, Jeff Skinner); 7:23 - Johan Larsson (2) (Lawrence Pilut, Evan Rodrigues)


BUF: 1:49 - Jeff Skinner (21) PPG (Rasmus Ristolainen, Jack Eichel)


Penalty Summary:

First Period:

BUF: 1:04 - Sam Reinhart (High sticking - 2 min.); 15:03 - Vladimir Sobotka (Slashing - 2 min.)
LA: 0:36 - Oscar Fantenberg (Slashing - 2 min.); 10:19 - Brendan Leipsic (Slashing - 2 min.); 16:08 - TEAM (Too many men on the ice - 2 min.)

Second Period:

BUF: 2:42 - Kyle Okposo (Interference - 2 min.); 4:41 - Nathan Beaulieu (Cross-checking - 2 min.)
LA: 9:37 - Dion Phaneuf (Interference - 2 min.); 18:10 - Jeff Carter (Slashing - 2 min.)

Third Period:

BUF: 5:44 - Zach Bogosian (Fighting - 5 min.)
LA: 3:40 - Derek Forbort (Hooking - 2 min.); 5:44 - Nate Thompson (Fighting - 5 min.); 17:33 - Jeff Carter (Tripping - 2 min.); 19:56 - Oscar Fantenberg (Holding - 2 min.)



Shots on Goal:

BUF: 47 (16, 11, 16, 4) 
LA: 29 (10, 15, 4, 0)  


BUF: Linus Ullmark - 26 saves
LA: Cal Petersen - 43 saves

Power Plays:

BUF: 2 for 8 (25%)
LA: 0 for 4 (0%)

Three Stars:

  1. Jack Eichel - BUF
  2. Rasmus Dahlin - BUF
  3. Jeff Skinner - BUF

What's Next

The Sabres remain home to welcome the Arizona Coyotes on Thursday night for a seven o'clock puck drop on the flagship home of the Sabres Radio Network - WGR Sports Radio 550. Pre-game coverage with Mike Schopp and the Bulldog begins at 6 p.m. from (716) Food and Sport.

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