Sabres
Thrashers
2 - 3 Final - 2OT
  for this game

Thrashers end slide with shootout win

Oct 19, 2008 - 4:44 AM ATLANTA (Ticker) -- Vyacheslav Kozlov refused to allow the Atlanta Thrashers to give away a victory.

Kozlov scored the decisive goal in the third round of the shootout, lifting the Atlanta Thrashers to a 3-2 triumph over the Buffalo Sabres on Saturday.

After Ilya Kovalchuk and Drew Stafford traded second-round goals in the bonus format, Kozlov - a former Sabre - beat goaltender Patrick Lalime to the glove side with a quick wrist shot to give the Thrashers the edge. Thomas Vanek fired the puck wide of the net on Buffalo's last chance, sealing the win for Atlanta.

Kovalchuk and Bryan Little scored in regulation and Kari Lehtonen made 28 saves for the Thrashers, who went 0-2-1 after opening the season with a victory over the Washington Capitals.

"Two points from an undefeated team is great for our confidence," Lehtonen said. "I was disappointed for giving up the tying goal, but just before overtime, there is some time to regroup. Then I was excited to go out and get two points."

Vanek netted his league-leading seventh goal and Jason Pominville also tallied for the Sabres (4-0-1), who have recorded a point in each game thus far this campaign.

"We have to give Atlanta some credit," Buffalo coach Lindy Ruff said. "They came out hard and put us on our heels. They forced us into some penalties. I thought the last 40 minutes, we carried most of the play. They smoked us in the first 20."

Atlanta got off to a blistering start, outshooting Buffalo, 19-6, in the first period en route to a 2-0 lead. The advantage would have been larger if not for the sensational play of Lalime, who finished with 35 saves.

"He played very well," Ruff said. "He just made save after save. (The first) was a tough period for us."

The Thrashers appeared in control until Vanek halved the deficit with three minutes remaining in the second period. With Buffalo on a 5-on-3 power play, the Austrian controlled the puck along the left wing boards and skated to the top of the faceoff circle before slapping it into the top right corner of the net.

Things still looked good for the Thrashers until Pominville stole the puck from enforcer Eric Boulton near the left point in the offensive zone. After unleashing a shot from the slot that was knocked down by the glove of Lehtonen, Pominville grabbed his own rebound and backhanded the puck into the net from the left side with 3:08 remaining in the third, forging a 2-2 tie.

"I like how we came back in the second and third," Lalime said. "It would have been nice to get the extra point. But Kari played a solid game at the other end. Atlanta took advantage of a few mistakes we made."

Atlanta was outshot, 24-16, over the final 45 minutes.

"I don't think we were as aggressive as we should have been, and we took four or five penalties in a row," Thrashers coach John Anderson said. "It was what it was. It was a major breakdown. We've got to be smarter."

Kovalchuk opened the scoring 95 seconds into the contest with his second goal of the season. After receiving a pass at center ice, the Russian star skated in on a partial breakaway and lifted the puck into the top right side of the net.

Little doubled the lead with 2:48 to go in the first, beating Lalime high to the glove side with a wrist shot from the inner edge of the right circle for his fourth of the campaign.

Todd White set up both goals for the Thrashers, who improved to 11-3-3 all-time against the Sabres at home.

Pominville also notched an assist for Buffalo, which successfully killed all six of Atlanta's power plays. The Sabres improved to a perfect 24-for-24 on the penalty kill this season.

The Thrashers have failed to convert on their last 21 power-play opportunities.

"We're getting chances, but we're just not putting them in the net," Anderson said.






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    Sabres 2, Thrashers 3  Final - 2OTOct 19 11:52 AM


  • NHL
    FINAL IN SHOOTOUT 1ST 2ND 3RD OT TOTAL
    --- --- --- --- -----
    BUFFALO 0 1 1 0 (1) 2
    ATLANTA 2 0 0 0 (2) 3 FINAL IN SHOOTOUT
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: ATL - ILYA KOVALCHUK 2 (TODD WHITE) 1:35
    ATL - BRYAN LITTLE 4 (TODD WHITE) 17:12
    2ND PRD: BUF - (PP) THOMAS VANEK 7 (ALES KOTALIK, JASON POMINVILLE)
    17:00
    3RD PRD: BUF -

    Sabres 2, Thrashers 3  Final - 2OTOct 18 9:50 PM


  • NHL
    END OF OT 1ST 2ND 3RD OT TOTAL
    --- --- --- --- -----
    BUFFALO 0 1 1 0 2
    ATLANTA 2 0 0 0 2 END OF OT
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: ATL - ILYA KOVALCHUK 2 (TODD WHITE) 1:35
    ATL - BRYAN LITTLE 4 (TODD WHITE) 17:12
    2ND PRD: BUF - (PP) THOMAS VANEK 7 (ALES KOTALIK, JASON POMINVILLE)
    17:00
    3RD PRD: BUF - JASON P

    Oct 18 9:40 PM
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    Sabres 2, Thrashers 2  OT - 4:55Oct 18 9:34 PM


  • NHL
    END OF THE 3RD GOING INTO OT
    1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    BUFFALO 0 1 1 2
    ATLANTA 2 0 0 2 GOING INTO OT
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: ATL - ILYA KOVALCHUK 2 (TODD WHITE) 1:35
    ATL - BRYAN LITTLE 4 (TODD WHITE) 17:12
    2ND PRD: BUF - (PP) THOMAS VANEK 7 (ALES KOTALIK, JASON POMINVILLE)
    17:00
    3RD PRD: BUF - JASON POMINVILLE 2 (UNASSISTED)

    Oct 18 9:32 PM
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    Sabres 2, Thrashers 2  End of Reg.Oct 18 9:32 PM


  • NHL
    BUFFALO 2
    ATLANTA 2 3:08 LEFT, 3RD PRD

    Sabres 2, Thrashers 2  3rd - 3:08Oct 18 9:29 PM
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    Sabres 2, Thrashers 2  3rd - 3:08Oct 18 9:29 PM


  • NHL
    END OF THE 2ND 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    BUFFALO 0 1 1
    ATLANTA 2 0 2 END OF THE 2ND
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: ATL - ILYA KOVALCHUK 2 (TODD WHITE) 1:35
    ATL - BRYAN LITTLE 4 (TODD WHITE) 17:12
    2ND PRD: BUF - (PP) THOMAS VANEK 7 (ALES KOTALIK, JASON POMINVILLE)
    17:00
    SHOTS ON GOAL: 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    ---

    Oct 18 8:44 PM


  • NHL
    BUFFALO 1
    ATLANTA 2 3:00 LEFT, 2ND PRD

    Sabres 1, Thrashers 2  2nd - 3:00Oct 18 8:42 PM
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    Sabres 0, Thrashers 2  2nd - 7:50Oct 18 8:28 PM


  • NHL
    END OF THE 1ST 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    BUFFALO 0 0
    ATLANTA 2 2 END OF THE 1ST
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: ATL - ILYA KOVALCHUK 2 (TODD WHITE) 1:35
    ATL - BRYAN LITTLE 4 (TODD WHITE) 17:12
    SHOTS ON GOAL: 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    BUF 6 6
    ATL 19 19
    GOALIES

    Oct 18 7:48 PM


  • NHL
    BUFFALO 0
    ATLANTA 2 2:48 LEFT, 1ST PRD

    Sabres 0, Thrashers 2  1st - 2:48Oct 18 7:48 PM


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    BUFFALO 0
    ATLANTA 1 18:25 LEFT, 1ST PRD

    Sabres 0, Thrashers 1  1st - 18:25Oct 18 7:13 PM
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    Sabres vs. ThrashersOct 17 10:38 PM