2-2 on the 22nd

Ok so I know the Sabres evened up the series on the 20th, but since I’m writing the post now I had to go with the clever title did I not?…

With the pivotal game 5 tonight (4/22) in Philly I wanted to give a few quick thoughts on game 4 and what needs to happen in game 5.

Game 4:

1) Miller returned to his super-human form (take that all you doubters) stopping all 29 shots he faced…sound familiar? O ya 1-0 was the score of game 1. There seems to a pattern developing, Miller plays out of his mind and lets ZERO goals in and the Sabres win (would like to see them win a game however when Miller doesn’t stop EVERY shot).

2) Pominville finally found the net. After being relatively non-existent Pomers went “top shelf where Mama hides the cookies” and had the Sabres only goal of the game! 

3) This didn’t happen “during the game” per-say, but the events being discussed certainly did. After another physical battle Mike Richards, Captain of the Flyers, complained that the Sabres were “getting away with murder”. This struck a chord with Ruff who up until this point had been completely silent (did I call or it what when I said it was only a matter of time before the coaches got involved?) Here is Ruff’s statement in full:

“I just feel that they’re doing a lot of whining,”

“They’re really doing a lot of whining.

“I didn’t hear any whining when they had 10 power plays in Philly, and I didn’t hear any whining when the power plays in the first game were lopsided. But all of a sudden there’s all this whining about, ‘We’re getting away with murder.’

“That’s a bunch of crap. That’s for the media. That’s for the officials to read. That’s, ‘Here, let’s get the next call.’ That’s a bunch of crap. Let’s just play.”

As you can see Ruff was quite opinionated about this and it didn’t take long for Mike Richards, the original instigator of this argument, to respond:

“That’s fine, that’s fine, we’re focused on tomorrow night,”

“He seems to have a way with the media.

“He does this, I think, every time they’re in the playoffs. We’re just focused on tomorrow night, getting a good start and getting our licks in on some of their good players and not worry about the other stuff.”

As you can see all of the physicalness that has been boiling over on the ice has now found its place off the ice as well.

Now looking ahead to tomorrow’s (well technically today’s) game…

Game 5:

1) Both Tylers need to come to play. It is time for Big Tyler and Little Tyler to make a statement. Myers (Big Tyler) has finally begun putting that 6’8” frame to some use. After getting handled the first 3 games of the series he came to play in game 4 and needs to continue sticking up for himself and his teammates as this series continues. Ennis (Little Tyler) finally showed up on the stats sheet recording the assist on the Pominville goal, but he needs to start producing a few goals of his own if the Sabres hope to continue winning.

2) A GIANT return. That’s right the evil Chris Pronger looks like he will be taking the ice for the first time this series in game 5 at the Wells Fargo Center. This is another reason why the Sabres are going to need a big game out of Myers because at 6’6” Pronger tends to pose some issues.

*Aww that was cute* Now that better all go away when you hit the ice…for some reason I don’t see that being an issue for Mr. Myers.

3) Roy is closing in on a return. Roy was on the ice for Thursday’s optional skate, and while he hasn’t been cleared for practice, he continues to ramp up his on-ice activities.

“We’re just working on the power, just trying to get power back in the leg, and trying to get my first quick steps in,” Roy told reporters. “I think that’s the hardest part, coming out of turns and fighting off opponents and whatnot, so I’m going to have to work on that.”

It’s been believed that the only way Roy would return to the lineup would be if the Sabres at least got to the second round of the playoffs, but the timetable could be speeding up. Regardless of if you want Roy inserted back in the lineup or not (chemistry issues are what most people are concerned over) another healthy, speedy, talented forward as an option CANNOT hurt at least from a depth perspective. Especially when that player happens to be one of your top goal scorers and leader (we’ll however wait to cross that bridge until we arrive at it).

So that is all from me for tonight. I know this was rather short, but it’s late and I said what I meant and I meant what I said! What a great series this is turning out to be. Some games have displayed great goaltending while others have been light the lamp kind of night’s. Each game has been physical (whether or not you agree with the calls) and now trash talking is escalating all the way to the head coaching ranks.

One player who I have yet to mention impressing the hell out of me is Nathan Gerbe. The smallest guy on the ice has made the biggest difference this series apart for Miller. With so much energy every time he touches the puck this kid has been a spark plug and needs to continue to do so. He’s even taking cheap shots from goons like Hartnell after the whistle and fighting back!

“I had it tough with Hartnell, i had ahold of his and was getting moved around. It was fun. That’s why you love the game. It’s a blast playing!”

O and did I mention the kid can put the puck in the net?

As I said during the last post I thought Buffalo would come out and win game 4 for their fans and even this thing up. They did. I also said I thought Philly would come back and take game 5 before Buffalo won games 6 and 7 to take the series. Let’s hope I’m wrong and that Buffalo wins this thing in 6. How great would it be for Terry Pegula and all those Buffalo fans to see this team move on at home on Easter Sunday?


Game 5: Friday, April 22 at Philadelphia, 7:35 p.m. MSG, VERSUS, TSN


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