Buffalo (WKBW) The Buffalo Sabres kept their slim playoff hopes alive with three straight wins, and then watched them end with one big letdown on home ice. The New York Rangers scored 5 goals in a span of 2:58 before handing the Sabres a 8-4 loss. The setback eliminated Buffalo from postseason contention.
A scoreless game turned ugly late in the first period. Ryan Miller gave up two goals on a pair of bad breaks for the goaltender. Carl Hagelin and Brad Richards scored 17 seconds apart on goals that both went off the skate of a Buffalo defenseman. The first went off Adam Pardy, the second off of Christian Ehrhoff.
The third goal was Miller's fault. The goaltender whiffed while playing the puck on a clearing attempt. Ryan Clowe took the turnover and scored his third goal of the season to give the Rangers a 3-0 lead after the first period.
The Sabres limped into the second period where it only got worse.
Anton Stralman scored just 1:13 in to make it 4-0 Rangers. That was the end of the night for Miller. Jhonas Enroth replaced him and didn't fair much better. Brad Richards scored :27 seconds later to make it 5-0. Rick Nash gave the Rangers a 6-0 at 7:05 of the second.
The Sabres finally got on the board later in the period. Cody Hodgson scored on the power play with in tip-in. Then Nathan Gerbe scored :06 seconds later to make it 6-2. Drew Stafford and Mark Pysyk also scored for the Sabres. Brad Richards finished with his first career hat trick for the Rangers.