TAMPA, Fla. (AP) -- The Buffalo Sabres got their road trip off to
a good start.
Daniel Briere and Thomas Vanek scored in the shootout to give
Buffalo a 4-3 victory over the defending Stanley Cup champion Tampa
Bay Lightning on Thursday night.
"Anytime you get a road win it's exciting ... but if you beat
the Stanley Cup champions in their building it's a good boost,"
Vanek said after the Sabres won the opener of a three-game trip.
Tampa Bay is about to find out what life on the road is like.
The Lightning (2-2-1) play three games away from home after
opening the season with four of five at the St. Pete Times Forum.
"I'm very disappointed in the outcome," Tampa Bay's Martin St.
Louis said. "I think we've fought it a little bit. Tonight was
better. I think it will be good to get our team on the road and
spend time together."
"I like that kind of challenge," Miller said. "It's a fun
challenge for goalies."
Maxim Afinogenov's waist-high deflection of Toni Lydman's shot
got Buffalo even at 3 with 8:47 left in the third period. Briere
and Paul Gaustad also scored for the Sabres, who played the final
1:48 of overtime with a two-man advantage after the Lightning
received three minor penalties. Buffalo got only one shot during
"That was disappointing, but we made some poor decisions,"
Buffalo coach Lindy Ruff said. "They brought their triangle in
real low and we still kept trying to squeeze plays. When you see a
team collapse as much as they did, it would have been better for
our guys to shoot."
Tampa Bay got goals from Richards, Vincent Lecavalier and Vinny
Prospal. Lightning coach John Tortorella, who was unhappy with the
work ethic in a 4-2 loss to Boston on Monday, said the Lightning
took a step forward.
"From where we were before this game to after this game, there
are a lot of positives," Tortorella said. "The team battled hard.
We have to build off of that."
Gaustad tied the game at 10:16 of the second period and Prospal
gave the Lightning a 3-2 lead when he skated through the slot and
scored on a wrist shot at 13:51.
Briere put the Sabres ahead 1-0 when he scored on a rebound of
his own shot 5:15 into the first. Tampa Bay tied it on Richards'
goal at 8:14.
Miller had 32 saves, two more than Tampa Bay's John Grahame.
The Lightning went 13-1-3 in October the previous two
seasons. ... Sabres C Adam Mair (groin strain) could be activated
from injured reserve for Saturday's game at Florida. ... Lightning
LW Ruslan Fedotenko left the game with what the team called a lower
body injury. He will re-evaluated on Friday. ... The assist for
Tampa Bay's Darryl Sydor ended a 10-game, regular season scoring
drought. ... Buffalo has ended the first period tied in four of
five games this season. ... Lightning D Timo Helbling assisted on
Lecavalier's goal for his first NHL point.
Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press
Arena: Tampa Bay Times Forum Location: Tampa, Florida
Referees: Mike Hasenfratz, Shane Heyer Linesmen: David Brisebois, Scott Driscoll
Attendance: 20,184 (102.2% full)
Team Stat Comparison
Power Play Goals
Power Play Opportunities
Shots on Goal
Daniel Briere (1)
Assist: Thomas Vanek
Brad Richards (2)
Vincent Lecavalier (2)
Assists: Darryl Sydor, Timo Helbling
Paul Gaustad (2)
Assists: Taylor Pyatt, Dmitri Kalinin
Vinny Prospal (2)
Assists: Ruslan Fedotenko, Cory Sarich
Maxim Afinogenov (2)
Assists: Toni Lydman, Thomas Vanek