TOR
26-17-5
BUF
21-21-6
SO
34 SOG
36 SOG

Leafs Squander Lead In Shootout Loss

Associated Press | Friday, 03.22.2013 / 12:13 AM

BUFFALO, N.Y. _ Steve Ott has quickly won over blue-collar Buffalo fans with his hard-hitting, gritty style, and the forward should become even more popular following a handful of clutch goals.

Ott had the decisive score in the sixth round of the shootout and the Sabres rallied for a 5-4 win over the Toronto Maple Leafs on Thursday.

Two nights earlier, Ott scored twice, including one in overtime, in a 3-2 win at Montreal. And his shootout attempt against Toronto was his first since Oct. 25, 2011, and the fifth overall in his nine-year NHL career.

``I was excited. I'm just glad I was able to go before my 'brother' Mike Weber,'' Ott said with a laugh, referring to Buffalo's defensive-minded defenceman.

Interim coach Ron Rolston had plenty of confidence in Ott, whose role has gradually increased since being acquired in a trade that sent under-performing centre Derek Roy to Dallas last summer.

``He was the guy to go to,'' Rolston said. ``He brings a lot of energy to the team and especially the grit he plays with on a consistent basis. He can be put out in all situations.''

With the crowd on its feet cheering Ott to the ice, he drove directly at James Reimer and slipped the puck just inside the right post. Ryan Miller then sealed the win by getting his left pad out to stop former Sabres forward Clarke MacArthur.

Christian Ehrhoff had a goal and two assists for Buffalo, which won consecutive games for only the fourth time this season. Tyler Ennis had a goal and an assist, and Marcus Foligno and Jason Pominville also scored.

Miller stopped 30 shots through overtime, and allowed only Tyler Bozak to score in the tiebreaker.

Nazem Kadri had two goals and an assist for Toronto, which was unable to build off a 4-2 win over Tampa Bay a day earlier. Bozak and Mikhail Grabovski also scored in regulation.

Reimer made 32 saves through OT, but allowed two goals in the shootout, including one to Drew Stafford.

Reimer has allowed four goals in five of seven starts since he returned after missing eight games with a knee injury, but he said there was no reason to be concerned.

``When you score four, you should win. But at least we got a point, which is important,'' he said. ``No reason to pull the alarm, but obviously it's something we're aware of.''

And Reimer became confused when asked about the Leafs dropping to 1-3-3 in their past seven.

``To me, that's one game over .500, if that make sense,'' Reimer said, laughing. ``I don't know if it does. Maybe it doesn't, I don't know. Too many pucks to the head.''

Bozak and Kadri scored 76 seconds apart to put the Leafs ahead 2-0 midway through the first period. And Toronto appeared in control 8:52 into the second, when Grabovski deflected in Jake Gardiner's shot from the blue line to make it a 3-1 advantage.

The Sabres responded by scoring the next three, capped by Ehrhoff's blast from the blue line 22 seconds into the third.

The Maple Leafs responded six minutes later. Kadri was battling Buffalo's Jordan Leopold in front when he managed to deflect in Cody Franson's shot from the right circle.

Accustomed to blowing two-goal leads, as Buffalo at Montreal on Tuesday, the Sabres showed they could overcome them, too.

``We didn't quit,'' Miller said. ``We battled back and got a lead, which is great.''

The Sabres also didn't shy away from the Maple Leafs' physical style.

Maple Leafs forward Colton Orr was ejected 2:09 in after he broke his stick in two cross-checking Patrick Kaleta off a face-off. That sparked a fight between Orr and Kaleta as well as the teams' two heavyweights, Buffalo's John Scott and Toronto's Frazer McLaren.

And Ott made his presence known by exchanging several shoves with Toronto captain Dion Phaneuf in the opening minutes.

``We matched size for size, hit for hit,'' Ott said. ``That's why it was a 4-4 game in a shootout at the end of it all.''

NOTES: The Maple Leafs were without LW Joffrey Lupul, who was suspended two games by the NHL earlier in the day for an illegal hit to the head of Tampa Bay defenceman Victor Hedman a day earlier. ... The Sabres were minus leading scorer Thomas Vanek, who is day to day after being struck by a shot in the right hip in a 3-2 OT win at Montreal on Tuesday. ... C Kadri entered the game with a team-leading 30 points (11 goals, 19 assists) in 30 games. At 22, he became the team's youngest player to reach 30 points in 30 games since 22-year-old Ed Olczyk did it in 1988-89.

1st2nd3rdOTsoT
TOR ()
BUF ()
Scoring Summary
1st Period
08:48TOR PPG - Tyler Bozak (9) Snap shot - ASST: Phil Kessel (19), Dion Phaneuf (12) 1 - 0 TOR
10:04TOR Nazem Kadri (12) Tip-in - ASST: Nikolai Kulemin (12), Clarke MacArthur (9) 2 - 0 TOR
18:54BUF Tyler Ennis (9) Wrist shot - ASST: Steve Ott (12), Cody Hodgson (13) 2 - 1 TOR
2nd Period
08:52TOR Mikhail Grabovski (7) Tip-in - ASST: Jake Gardiner (1), Nazem Kadri (20) 3 - 1 TOR
11:39BUF Marcus Foligno (4) Wrist shot - ASST: Kevin Porter (2), Christian Ehrhoff (11) 3 - 2 TOR
12:24BUF Jason Pominville (10) Wrist shot - ASST: Cody Hodgson (14) 3 - 3 Tie
3rd Period
00:22BUF PPG - Christian Ehrhoff (3) Slapshot - ASST: Cody Hodgson (15), Tyler Ennis (14) 4 - 3 BUF
06:33TOR PPG - Nazem Kadri (13) Tip-in - ASST: Cody Franson (16), Phil Kessel (20) 4 - 4 Tie
OT Period
NONE
Shootout
1BUFJason Pominville - Save
2TORNazem Kadri - Save
3BUFTyler Ennis - Save
4TORTyler Bozak - Goal
5BUFDrew Stafford - Goal
6TORJames van Riemsdyk - Save
7BUFCody Hodgson - Save
8TORPhil Kessel - Save
9BUFVille Leino - Save
10TORMikhail Grabovski - Missed
11BUFSteve Ott - Goal
12TORClarke MacArthur - Save
Shootout Summary
RNDBuffalo SabresToronto Maple Leafs
1Jason Pominville
Nazem Kadri
2Tyler Ennis
Tyler Bozak
3Drew Stafford
James van Riemsdyk
4Cody Hodgson
Phil Kessel
5Ville Leino
Mikhail Grabovski
6Steve Ott
Clarke MacArthur
Three Stars of the Game
Christian Ehrhoff
1st
Christian Ehrhoff
G: 1Shots: 3
A: 1Hits: 1
PTS: 2PIM: 0
+/-: 3TOI: 27:01
Nazem Kadri
2nd
Nazem Kadri
C
G: 2Shots: 8
A: 1Hits: 0
PTS: 3PIM: 0
+/-: 1TOI: 21:27
Tyler Ennis
3rd
Tyler Ennis
G: 1Shots: 4
A: 1Hits: 1
PTS: 2PIM: 2
+/-: 0TOI: 24:12
Penalty Summary
1st Period
02:09TOR Colton Orr  Fighting (maj) against  Patrick Kaleta
02:09TOR Colton Orr  Cross checking against  Patrick Kaleta
02:09TOR Colton Orr  Instigator against  Patrick Kaleta
02:09TOR Colton Orr  Misconduct (10 min) against  Patrick Kaleta
02:09TOR Colton Orr  Game misconduct against  Patrick Kaleta
02:09BUF John Scott  Fighting (maj) against  Frazer McLaren
02:09BUF Patrick Kaleta  Fighting (maj) against  Colton Orr
02:09TOR Frazer McLaren  Fighting (maj) against  John Scott
08:32BUF Steve Ott  Unsportsmanlike conduct against  Dion Phaneuf
16:54TOR Mark Fraser  Interference against  Patrick Kaleta
2nd Period
06:42BUF Steve Ott  Slashing against  Mikhail Grabovski
11:48BUF John Scott  Unsportsmanlike conduct against  Phil Kessel
11:48TOR Phil Kessel  Unsportsmanlike conduct against  John Scott
13:30BUF Tyler Myers  Interference against  Nazem Kadri
19:39TOR Clarke MacArthur  Slashing against  Steve Ott
3rd Period
04:57BUF Tyler Ennis  Slashing against  Cody Franson
18:43TOR Nikolai Kulemin  Hi-sticking against  Tyler Ennis
OT Period
NONE
shots by period
PeriodTORBUF
1st511
2nd118
3rd1314
OT53
Total3436
Team Stats
CategoryTORBUF
Power Plays2/41/5
Hits3130
Faceoff Wins3726
Giveaways1010
Takeaways36
Blocked Shots168
Penalty Minutes4220
  • TORONTO
  • BUFFALO
#skatersPosGA+/-SPIMTOI
3D. PhaneufD01-12026:36
4C. FransonD01-22021:30
11J. McClementC00-13020:03
16C. MacArthurL0110219:51
21J. van RiemsdykL00-13017:37
24J. LilesD0000019:21
28C. OrrR0000290:02
36C. GunnarssonD00-10020:16
38F. McLarenL000053:49
39M. FrattinR0003016:04
41N. KuleminL01-10217:28
42T. BozakC10-16019:03
43N. KadriC2118021:27
45M. FraserD00-10217:47
47L. KomarovC000004:42
51J. GardinerD0121024:16
81P. KesselR0203219:27
84M. GrabovskiC1013017:03
#GoaliesSvSASv%TOI
34J. Reimer3236.88965:00
#skatersPosGA+/-SPIMTOI
3J. LeopoldD00-13021:54
6M. WeberD0002018:02
9S. OttC0103423:00
10C. EhrhoffD1133027:01
12K. PorterC0111014:52
19C. HodgsonC0324023:16
21D. StaffordR00-22016:35
23V. LeinoL00-22019:46
24R. RegehrD00-10018:15
29J. PominvilleR1022024:06
32J. ScottL000073:31
36P. KaletaR000255:53
53M. PysykD00-11016:49
55J. HechtC000307:08
57T. MyersD0012220:24
63T. EnnisC1104224:12
65B. FlynnC0011015:22
82M. FolignoL1011012:29
#GoaliesSvSASv%TOI
30R. Miller3034.88264:38