Here are some thoughts on the 1st game of the playoffs:
The Sabres should not have won this game. There were several factors that gave them the edge they needed to capture home ice advantage in this series.
Ryan Miller is back, I missed him. He was the goaltender we saw last season and in the olympics. He was a stablizing presence, coving his angles and not letting rebounds get away.
It was the type of unremarkable, remarkable games that I loved watching last year and hopefully we’ll see more of that this postseason.
So much has been made about the Flyers’ depth at forward, but in game 1 Buffalo was the deeper club. The Flyers were able to shut down the Sabres’ top two lines but it was the bottom six that really hurt them.
Gerbe-Gaustad-Kaleta was a dominant energy line that consistently got offensive pressure. this line will be hard to play against for any team in the playoffs and instantly makes Buffalo a tougher out. Niedermayer-McCormick-Grier was a surprisingly effective line, but Grier and Niedermayer always turn it on in the playoffs and all three guy were playing the body.
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