Game 51: The irritation of sameness in losing
The Buffalo Sabres 3-1 loss to the St. Louis Blues highlighted many of the issues that have plagued them all season long.
BUFFALO — After getting goalie’d by Jake Oettinger and the Dallas Stars on Tuesday night, Saturday’s matinee against St. Louis offered the Buffalo Sabres the opportunity to show that, yes, what they’ve seemingly figured out over the past few weeks is real and that a different version of this up-and-down team had finally emerged.
Alas, the Blues took the game 3-1 and much of what the Sabres did during the game looked all too similar to other performances we’ve seen this season.
The Sabres again gave up the first goal of the game in the first period. They, again, battled back to tie it up only to lose the lead moments later which got the fully ensconced in a playoff battle Blues to lock things down and force the Sabres to decide if they were going to dig in or try to do things the “easy” way.
The Sabres chose the latter which sent them head long into a fully frustrating afternoon of hockey chasing the opponents.
“This game is different than the other night certainly in many respects and all of them from the foundation of just working and not working hard enough tonight and not working toward the front of the net enough tonight,” Sabres coach Don Granato said. “Simple. Any other thing you want to discuss after that, that’s the primary. We need to elevate work ethic, compete level, specifically to the net. Period.”
Granato is 100 percent correct in saying it was different than Tuesday’s game against Dallas. It was. But the result was the same and the road taken to that result was one well-traveled.