BUFFALO, N.Y. (WKBW) — One Boston goal was enough as the Buffalo Sabres fell to the Bruins 3-0 on Friday night, their first loss at KeyBank Center since November 27th. The loss dropped the Sabres to 17-15-7 overall and 5-5-2 in December. The Sabres will be back on the ice Sunday night in Boston before wrapping up 2019 on New Year's Eve against Tampa Bay.
3 Observations from tonight's game
No shortage of chances
Normally when a team comes back from the holiday break, they can be a little sluggish. That wasn't the case for the Buffalo Sabres or Boston Bruins as each team came out firing on both sides of the ice early and often. The Sabres, in particular, had plenty of chances. The biggest early "ugh" from the crowd may have come with 3:36 left in the first when Marcus Johansson had a wide open look, off a pass from Jeff Skinner, that was stopped by the glove of Jaroslav Halak. The biggest late "ugh" from the crowd came more than midway through the third when Rasmus Dahlin hit the post during a power play opportunity. There were plenty more "ughs" in between as the Sabres just couldn't get a bounce in their favor.
The Goalie Show
Speaking of Halak, he and Linus Ullmark were fantastic for the most part and the effort on both sides was fun to watch with each making some really nice saves. Ullmark gave up the first goal of the night to Patrice Bergeron where it looked like he lost sight of the puck in the traffic out front. The second goal he allowed came in the 2nd period after Bergeron, once again, capitalized on a 2-on-1 opportunity. Still, the intensity both Halak and Ullmark played with for the full 60 minutes was nice to see in the first game of the home-and-home series.
A full house with a lot of Boston fans
It was a good crowd tonight with minimal seats available, but I'd be lying if I didn't note the amount of Boston fans. I could see all of the yellow and black from press row but it wasn't until the Bruins scored their first goal of the night that you realized how many visiting fans were in the house. Hint: it was fairly loud with applause following both goals. It's nice to see KeyBank Center filled up on a night like this, but it would've been nicer to see some more navy and yellow out there.