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5 Observations: Flames rally, top Sabres 2-1 in OT

5 Observations: Flames rally, top Sabres 2-1 in OT
Posted at 10:04 PM, Oct 30, 2018
and last updated 2018-10-30 22:04:39-04

For the second straight game, the Buffalo Sabres fell in overtime, this time to the Calgary Flames 2-1. Matthew Tkachuk tied things up with just 56 seconds left on the clock, while Johnny Gaudreau scored the winner with 2:20 left in overtime. Jack Eichel scored the Sabres lone goal as Buffalo falls to 6-4-2 with the loss. 

5 Observations from Tuesday's loss: 

Solid October 

If they would've won I probably would have captioned this "Outstanding October". But for a team that has consistently started slow for nearly a decade, finishing the first month of the season with a 6-4-2 record is a fair start to the season. 

Despite back to back losses, Buffalo has now earned eight of a possible 10 points in their last five games. Leading up to the season the Sabres preached that they needed to quickly jump out of the gates. If you're going to talk the talk you better be able to walk to walk and the Sabres had their best start in years. 

How about Hutton?

After a less than stellar performance in his last outing, Carter Hutton was one of the Sabres best players, extinguishing almost all of the Flames' scoring chances. For what it's worth, I don't think there is anything he could've done on either Calgary goals. 

In the second period, he made likely the most impressive save from a Sabres goaltender this season, stopping Elias Lindholm from point blank with the paddle of his stick. That said, the Sabres were a bit lucky that the referees quickly blew the whistle after the save because the puck eventually snuck into the net. Either way, it was incredible save from Hutton, who kept his team ahead for much of this game. 

Bogosian bodies Dube 

In the final frame, Zach Bogosian took a charging penalty on a play where he sent Dillon Dube tumbling to the ice. Personally, I think the charging penalty was warranted. From my vantage point, it looked like Bogosian took several strides in order to make the play. 

That said, plenty of other fans and analysts said it was a clean hit and it shouldn't have been penalized. 

Either way, I love that Bogosian stood up for his teammate, Rasmus Dahlin, who was being harassed by Dube the shift prior. The hit woke up the crowd and I'm sure will earn Bogosian even more respect in the locker room [not that he needed it]. Despite the time left on the clock, I appreciate any time a veteran stands up for a rookie, especially someone like Dahlin. 

Ready, aim, fire!

Entering Tuesday's game against the Flames, Jack Eichel hadn't scored a goal in eight games. Despite averaging a point per game 11 games into the 2018-2019 campaign, Eichel hasn't found the back of the net as often as we're accustomed to. 

In the final minutes of the first period, Eichel snapped his scoreless streak, firing a heavy wrist shot past Calgary goaltender David Rittich. Over the years, Eichel has followed lulls with some impressive numbers. Perhaps he'll once again heat up and overtake his linemate Jeff Skinner for the Sabres goal scoring lead [six goals].

Top Trio

While we're on the topic of Eichel, his line featuring Jason Pominville and Skinner was once the Sabres most dominant. It seemed like more often than not when they were on the ice, good things were happening for the blue and gold. Pominville, who assisted on Eichel's first period goal, now has nine points in the Sabres last five games. What originally seemed like an odd combination is proving, at least early in the season, to be a unit the Sabres can rely on when they need some offense. 

Follow Matt Bove on Twitter!

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