NHL Game Summary - Pittsburgh at Buffalo
(Monday, October 10th)
Final Score: Buffalo 3, Pittsburgh 2 (OT)
Buffalo, NY (Sports Network) - Jochen Hecht scored with 21 seconds remaining in overtime to give Buffalo a 3-2 victory over winless Pittsburgh at HSBC Arena.
Toni Lydman notched a pair of assists and Paul Gaustad netted his first career goal for the Sabres, who are off to a 3-1 start in the young season.
Mark Recchi and Zigmund Palffy each had a goal and an assist in another tough loss for the Penguins, who fell for the third straight time in extra minutes. Pittsburgh has lost two straight games in overtime, while its defeat to Carolina on Friday came in a shootout.
This game appeared to also be headed to a shootout, before Buffalo's Tim Connolly slapped a shot from the right side on goal which young Penguins goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury initially stopped but couldn't control under his right pad. Hecht then rushed in and knocked the puck over the line to end the contest.
Fleury, the No. 1 overall pick in the 2003 entry draft, played well in his season debut despite allowing the game-winner. The 20-year-old, who was recalled from Wilkes Barre of the AHL on Sunday, made 38 saves in the setback.
Fleury was brought up after starting netminder Jocelyn Thibault was placed on injured reserve Sunday because of a bruised knee.
Buffalo opened the scoring less than 3 1/2 minutes after the opening whistle when Mike Grier found a darting Rory Fitzpatrick in front of the net and the defenseman slipped a shot through Fleury's pads.
Pittsburgh would answer three minutes later. Rookie sensation Sidney Crosby won a faceoff in the Sabres end and Recchi sent the puck out to defenseman Sergei Gonchar, who ripped a shot from the left point. Palffy outraced the Buffalo defense to knock home the rebound for his third goal of the season.
The Sabres would have a 5-on-3 advantage early in the second session, but couldn't cash in. J.P. Dumont had a blistering shot hit the crossbar, while Fleury made a nice glove save on a outside rocket by Connolly.
However, Buffalo would find the net midway through the period. Fleury stopped a blast from the left point by Lydman, but Gaustad was left alone in front and poked home the rebound through an open left side of the net for a 2-1 lead.
Recchi would knot the score again when he beat Sabres goaltender Ryan Miller after collecting a loose puck with 3:03 left in the second. Crosby and Palffy each received assists.
Buffalo owned a 17-5 shot advantage for the middle period. Neither team managed to score during a tightly and evenly played final 20 minutes of regulation.
Crosby now has recorded five assists in his first four NHL games...Miller finished with 26 saves...Buffalo went 0-for-5 on the power play, while Pittsburgh was scoreless on four attempts with the man advantage...Recchi's goal was his second of the year.
10/10 22:05:31 ET