NHL Game Summary - Toronto at Buffalo
(Wednesday, November 22nd)
Final Score: Buffalo 7, Toronto 4
Buffalo, NY (Sports Network) - Daniel Briere scored two goals, including the game winner, and also had an assist, as the Buffalo Sabres downed the Toronto Maple Leafs, 7-4, at HSBC Arena.
Jason Pominville, Maxim Afinogenov and Brian Campbell each had a goal and an assist for the Sabres, who have won two straight. Ryan Miller finished with 32 saves.
"We certainly do believe that we can come back," Briere said. "There's a lot of frustration being down 2-0 in the first five minutes of the game. Frustration at ourselves, but at the same time we believe we can come back. That's the nice thing, we've done it a few times this year. Believing is the first major step and we have that on our side right now."
Darcy Tucker scored two goals and Jeff O'Neill had a goal and an assist for the Maple Leafs, who have dropped three of their last four games. Andrew Raycroft allowed five goals on 27 shots.
"It was like a team practice out there," O'Neill said. "It was both ways. It wasn't much of a game, some good intensity, but way too many penalties on both sides."
With the game tied, the Sabres scored off a turnover by Raycroft to take a 5-4 lead with 5:19 remaining. Daniel Paille dumped the puck into the Toronto zone and Raycroft stopped the puck behind the net and fired a pass up the left boards. Pominville though knocked down the clearing attempt at the half wall and centered the puck to Briere, who fired the puck past Raycroft, who never regained solid position in the crease.
Mike Peca had a chance to tie the game with about 2 1/2 minutes left to play, but was stopped in front by Miller. Jaroslav Spacek took a hooking penalty on the play and the Leafs went to the power play.
With the man advantage, Toronto pulled Raycroft for a two-man advantage with over a minute to play and the decision backfired as Pominville iced the game with an empty-net goal.
Toronto decided to pull Raycroft again after setting up in the Buffalo zone, but Chris Drury scored from his own end for the final margin.
The Maple Leafs struck first and took a 1-0 lead after Tucker scored a power- play goal 2:19 into the contest. At the left point, Tomas Kaberle sent a pass down low to Tucker at the right side of the crease and he one-timed the feed past Miller.
Less than two minutes later, Toronto struck again on the power play to go up 2-0. Bryan McCabe fired a heavy slap shot from the point that missed the net wide right and kicked back out in front to Kyle Wellwood, who banged the disc past Miller.
The Sabres made it 2-1 after Afinogenov tallied a power-play goal at 10:27 of the first. Just over two minutes later, Buffalo evened the score at 2-2 after Jiri Novotny pounced on a loose puck in front and fired it past Raycroft high to the glove side.
Two goals by the Sabres in the first three minutes of the middle session gave Buffalo a 4-2 lead. Briere netted a power-play goal 1:54 into the period and about a minute later, Campbell took a feed from Briere and unleashed a wrister from the right circle that sailed past Raycroft.
Toronto made it 4-3 after O'Neill netted an unassisted goal with 5:05 remaining in the second stanza.
At 7:19 of the third frame, Kaberle blasted a slap shot from the point that Miller stopped, but Tucker crashed the net and pumped the rebound home to even the score at 4-4.
Thomas Vanek had two assists for Buffalo...The Sabres improved to 8-2-1 on home ice this season...Kaberle had three assists for the Maple Leafs...The Sabres will host Montreal on Friday while the Leafs will visit Washington... The Maple Leafs picked up the one-year option for 2007-08 on the contract of general manager John Ferguson earlier on Wednesday.
11/23 00:42:09 ET