Buffalo Sabres Beat Washington Capitals 5-4 in Overtime
In a game that featured four lead changes, the Buffalo Sabres kept their playoff hopes alive in a high scoring game against the Washington Capitals. In spite of the loss, the Washington Capitals secured first place in the Southeast Division by earning one point for the loss in overtime.
Alexander Ovechkin opened the scoring on the power-play with a spectacular feed from Brooks Laich.
The Capitals second power-play unit came into the Sabres zone with some great passes between Fedorov and Laich when Ovechkin floated in from the blue-line and took cross crease feed from Laich and made no mistake for his 55th goal of the season.
The Sabres tied things up with an even strength goal by Drew Stafford. Joraslov Spacek hammered a shot from the blue-line that Stafford tipped through the padding of Capitals goalie Simeon Varlamov and into the net.
The Sabres took the lead on a lucky goal by Clarke MacArthur. MacArthur looked to pass the puck from the side boards as he rushed into the Capitals zone and Victor Kozlov accidentally deflected the puck into his own net.
It looked as though Kozlov was trying to prevent the pass from reaching Jason Pomminville who was bearing down on the goal when Kozlov tipped the puck passed Varlamov into his own net.
The Sabres goalie Ryan Miller was looking solid late in the first period as Alexander Semin had a great chance to tie things up at two just above the face-off circle and fired a wrist shot that looked destined for the top shelf when Miller flashed his glove and snagged it out of the air.
He then made some great saves early in the second period while the Sabres took three straight penalties robbing Niklas Backstrom who took a great cross crease feed from Semin. Miller then made a great save on Ovechkin who fired a slap shot from the point.
The Caps were determined to score on the two man advantage and were able to beat Miller when Alexander Semin buried a rebound that came off of Miller's face mask and bounced behind him.
Fedorov quickly gave the Capitals the lead when he fired a rocket over Miller's left shoulder into the Sabres net. Tomas Fleischmann had made a great play to keep the puck in the Sabres end when Fedorov slapped it past Miller for another power-play goal.
Derek Roy tied things up at 18:17 of the second period when he tipped in a great slap pass from Tim Connolly on a Sabre power-play.
The Capitals regained the lead only 23 seconds later on a broken play where Ovechkin seemed to lose the puck as he broke his stick trying to shoot on net.
The puck bounced off of a Sabre defensemen to Fedorov who slapped a seeing eye shot through legs and bodies that ended up beating Miller for his second of the night.
Maxim Afinogenov looked like he had tied the game early in the third period when the puck went in off his body in front of Varlamov. The referee quickly waved off the goal as the Sabres player had made contact with the Capitals goaltender Varlamov.
The Sabres who are fighting to get back into the playoffs would not give up. They continued to pressure the Capitals net until Maxim Afinogenov jumped on another beautiful pass from Connolly in front of the Capitals net at 10:21 of the third period to tie things up at four.
The Sabres got the important two points for the win in overtime when Fedorov tried to make a pass to Ovechkin who was breaking out of his own zone.
The pass was picked off by Connolly, who got his third assist of the night with a breakaway pass to Pominville who beat Varlamov between the legs.
Alexander Ovechkin finished the night with one goal and two assists giving him 104 points. He also had 9 shots on net giving him 495 shots this season.
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