Drury scores in overtime as Sabres top RangersNov 27, 2006 - 2:57 AM
Drury scored in overtime and Thomas Vanek added a goal and an assist as the Buffalo Sabres won for the 11th time in 12 road games with a 3-2 victory over the New York Rangers.
Having also defeated the Rangers in overtime on November 5, Buffalo won for the third time in four contests and raised its record to 19-3-2. The Sabres also have won eight of 10 games after regulation.
"I think it was nice to just get the win," Vanek said. "I think we had chances to put them away earlier and we didn't. I think both goalies played unbelievable tonight. It just came down to one bounce and I'm glad we got it."
"We didn't make a lot of mistakes and we battled," Sabres coach Lindy Ruff said. "We battled every shift. I thought it was important. It was a tough game for both teams. ... You come into this situation and bounce back and win after a disappointing overtime loss to Montreal. It was a good bounce-back game for us."
Drury netted the game-winner at 1:36 of the extra session when he redirected defenseman Teppo Numminen's blast past goaltender Henrik Lundqvist for his 14th tally of the season.
"I was just was able to win a draw pretty clean and get it to Teppo," Drury said. "He got a real good shot on net and I was just driving the net and got a piece of it. (It) deflected off my stick."
"Drury deflected it in front of me," Lundqvist said. "It was going for my blocker and I went down to make a save and he deflected it on my glove side. So it was a good play by them. I don't know if they worked on that, but it was a good play and a tough goal."
The Sabres opened the scoring on a power play with 8:01 left in the second period. Vanek set up Maxim Afinogenov, whose wrister from the slot found the gap between Lundqvist's pads.
The 22-year-old Vanek, who collected 25 goals and 23 assists as a rookie in 2005-06, netted his 16th tally just 2:12 later to move within one of Brendan Shanahan of the Rangers for the league lead. He also recorded his third multi-point outing in four games.
After scoring with three seconds left in overtime to defeat the Pittsburgh Penguins on Saturday, Martin Straka needed only 20 seconds to respond, converting Jaromir Jagr's cross-crease feed on the doorstep for his 12th tally to cut the deficit to 2-1.
Straka also tied the game with 4:53 left in the third period with a wrister from the left circle that found the top right corner.
"We showed a lot of character to come back against a team like this," Straka said. "To be down 2-0 and come back I think is pretty good."
Ryan Miller made 25 saves and raised his record to 12-2-2 for the Sabres, who have won all three meetings against the Rangers this season.
"I thought tonight could have been a night where we win 2-1, but Straka made a really nice shot, caught the top of the net, post first," Miller said. "I guess it's more exciting where you got to do things the hard way all the time and we were able to pull it off."
Lundqvist stopped 28 shots and fell to 11-8-0 for New York, which saw its three-game winning streak end.
"I thought we had the momentum, but when we scored the second goal we stopped playing," Jagr said. "If it happened to (the Sabres) and they were down 2-0 and they scored two goals, they would have jumped on us. We are not a good team yet. When good teams get the momentum, they go for it."
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