NHL Game Summary - Philadelphia at Buffalo
(Friday, March 20th)
Final Score: Philadelphia 6, Buffalo 4
Buffalo, NY (Sports Network) - Danny Briere scored two goals late in the second period to help the Philadelphia Flyers edge the Buffalo Sabres, 6-4, at HSBC Arena.
Mike Richards had a goal and two assists while Simon Gagne, Jeff Carter and Mike Knuble each lit the lamp for the Flyers, who had dropped three of four coming into the contest. Martin Biron made 39 saves in the win.
"He sure played good tonight," said Philadelphia coach John Stevens about Biron's play. "He looks like he's getting back to the level he was playing at last year."
With 86 points, Philadelphia currently holds the fourth spot in the Eastern Conference with 12 games to play.
Derek Roy, Dominic Moore and Thomas Vanek each had a goal for the Sabres, who have lost five of their last six games. Patrick Lalime gave up all six goals on 31 shots.
"We had plenty of chances tonight," said Moore. "They were very opportunistic and we gave them some great opportunities that they capitalized on tonight."
Thanks to three consecutive power plays in the first period, Buffalo had several scoring chances and wound up with 13 shots on net, but were unable to put any past Biron, who made a beautiful glove save on Tim Connolly with 2 1/2 minutes to play in the frame.
Philly, though, did light the lamp in the opening frame to take a 1-0 lead.
Richards was hooked on a breakaway and awarded a penalty shot with 2:14 left in the frame, but his wrister dinged off the crossbar. However, he did score on a power play with 1:32 left in the frame as he skated down the right wing, cut through the middle and slipped a low shot between the pads of Lalime with 1:32 left in the first period.
Buffalo tied the game 3:55 into the second period as Jason Pominville sent a saucer pass from the right boards to the low left side, where Vanek chipped it past Biron.
The Sabres took a 2-1 lead less than three minutes later as Moore from the right side of the net banked the puck off the left skate of Biron and across the goal line.
However, the Flyers tied the game on the power play halfway through the second as Richards' slap pass from the top of the right circle was redirected into the net by Gagne in the slot.
Buffalo, though, regained the lead with under six minutes to play in the second as Roy jammed in a loose puck right near the goal line for a 3-2 advantage.
However, Briere scored twice over a span of 2:05 in the second period against his former team to give his current club a 4-3 lead heading into the third period.
Briere's first goal came when he received a pass from Matt Carle and chipped the puck past the glove of Lalime with 2:40 left in the frame.
Briere then scored the 200th goal of his career as Richards sent a backhand pass from the right boards to the slot, where Briere slapped it past Lalime.
Philadelphia gave itself some insurance at the 4:31 mark of the third. Knuble made a pass from the right side to the left, where Claude Giroux paused before flicking a shot on net. The puck was stopped, but popped into the air and Knuble banged it in. The goal was reviewed to see if Knuble hit it in with a high stick, but there was not enough evidence to overturn the call and the goal was allowed to stand.
Carter sealed the win with 2:11 to play.
Chris Butler scored his first NHL goal just before the clock expired to account for the final score.
The Flyers play in Pittsburgh on Sunday...The Sabres travel to New York where they will play the Rangers on Saturday...The Flyers took all four games against the Sabres this season...Philly went 2-for-3 on the power play while Buffalo failed on all seven of its chances.
03/21 00:56:42 ET