(Photo by Bill Wippert/NHLI via Getty Images)
Las Vegas–Today the Vegas Golden Knights continued their road swing with a stop over in Buffalo as they took on the Sabres for the final time this season.
In their last meeting back on October 17 the Golden Knights and Buffalo Sabres scored a combined 9 goals and it was David Perron in overtime scoring the most important marker of the game.
The Golden Knights came into Western New York having posted a 2-1 record on this 5 game road trip.
For one Golden Knights player this was a homecoming for him as Alex Tuch had 460 family and friends in the stands. The young Vegas forward grew up not too far from Buffalo which is less than a 2 an half hour drive from his hometown of Syracuse, NY.
Two other Vegas players celebrated career milestones as the former Sabres defenseman Brayden McNabb played in his 300th NHL game and Shea Theodore skated in his 100th.
The most part of the contest particularly in the first two periods of the game both Marc-André Fleury and Robin Lehner put on a goaltending clinic having stopped a combined 40 shots.
It wasn’t until the early stages of the third period where the 0-0 deadlock would finally be lifted. Opening the scoring of the game came from Sabres forward Justin Bailey.
After a costly turnover by Theodore in the Vegas end of the ice Benoit Pouliot capitalized on the opportunity in which he fed the puck to Bailey and with a burst of speed went in on Fleury and scored a backhander goal that broke the ice and made it a 1-0 Sabres lead at the 2:47 mark of the period.
With less than 5 minutes to go in the 3rd, the Golden Knights finally knotted the contest up with an equalizer strike from an unlikely source as it would be Deryk Engelland tying the game up for his 5th goal of the campaign.
Engelland’s marker banked off of Marco Scandella‘s arm, knee, and skate which found it’s way past Lehner for a 1-1 hockey game.
DERYK ENGELLAND TIES IT FROM BEHIND THE NET OFF THE DEFLECTION! pic.twitter.com/MRy4kmbBgb
— NHL Daily 365 (@NHLDaily365) March 10, 2018
With Engelland’s game tying goal forced overtime for the second of the season between the two clubs.
The Golden Knights best scoring chance in the fourth period came from an opportunity by Erik Haula and Tomas Tatar. Tatar couldn’t capitalize on the attempt on Lehner.
For the Sabres they couldn’t take advantage of their chances either as the game would need a shootout to decide the outcome.
Perron put the Golden Knights up early in the opening round of the shootout competition. In the top of the 3rd round it was Jacob Josefson tying it up to keep the Sabres hopes alive.
It would be the bottom half of the 5th round in which Haula sealed it for the Golden Knights by going glove side on Lehner that gave Vegas their 20th road win on the season.
— TRSN Vegas (@TRSNLasVegas) March 10, 2018
For the Golden Knights they would stand alone atop in the NHL history books with their 20th road win in their inaugural season.
In the shootout win, Fleury recorded his 21st victory on the Sabres lifetime by stopping 31 of 32 shots over the course of the game as he recorded a .969 save percentage. He would also improve to 24-9-3 on the season with the Golden Knights.
On the other end of the ice, Lehner was stellar in net for the Sabres as he made 33 saves of his own on 34 total shots and posted a .971 save percentage.
The Golden Knights after the win posted a 44-19-5 and captured their 92nd and 93rd points in the standings to maintain their 2nd place spot in the Western Conference.
After the game, Golden Knights forward Tuch took the time to thank the 460 family and friends who came out to watch Vegas take the win.
Alex Tuch greets his DEEP hometown squad after the win 👋 pic.twitter.com/5PnB82WvMs
— Vegas Golden Knights (@GoldenKnights) March 10, 2018