Thrashers
Sabres
4 - 3 Final - 2OT
  for this game

Sterling's shootout goal gives Thrashers win

Mar 15, 2009 - 3:55 AM
BUFFALO, New York (Ticker) -- Brett Sterling, back in the NHL for the first time since November, became a hero for the Atlanta Thrashers on Saturday night.

Hours after being called up from the minors, the 24-year old rookie scored the only goal in a shootout, giving Atlanta a 4-3 victory over the Buffalo Sabres.

"I was kind of surprised," said Sterling, who played in his fourth NHL game this season after playing in 13 last season. "I haven't done great in shootouts in the American league the last two years, but (coach John Anderson) gave me an opportunity. I had to put it upstairs, and I got it right up."

"I had him for a couple of years in (the AHL with) Chicago," Anderson said. "I saw him score 55 goals and go about 60 percent on shootouts. When he gets around the net with a little bit of time, he's usually pretty deadly."

Sterling's chance in the fourth round of the tiebreaker came about because of Todd White, who forced overtime for Atlanta by scoring with 3.5 seconds remaining in regulation. He swatted in a rebound after Buffalo goalie Patrick Lalime could not control Ron Hainsey's slap shot from the high slot.

"I tried to go to he net," White said. "I saw it lying there and just went for it."

"In the last minute, we basically gave it away," Lalime said. "It squeezed through. He came with a two-handed swat and there was no way for me to hold it down."

"We have to make sure the puck stays in the corner or gets out," Buffalo defenseman Toni Lydman said.

For Buffalo, which earned a point with the shootout loss, it was little consolation. The Sabres have lost three of their last four games and are 10th in the Eastern Conference. They did move within two points of the eighth and final playoff spot.

"Your three best shooters go out in the shootout and don't get a goal," said Sabres coach Lindy Ruff, who saw Derek Roy, Tim Connolly, Drew Stafford, and Thomas Vanek all come up empty in the shootout. "That makes it tough."

Slava Kozlov and Marty Reasoner also scored for Atlanta, a 13th place team playing the role of spoiler. The Thrashers have won five straight, equaling their season-high.

"We're trying to grow as a team and set the standard for next year," Anderson said. "We want to win as many games as we can."

Derek Roy had a goal and an assist in a 3:12 span in the second period for the Sabres. Daniel Paille and Maxim Afinogenov also scored for the Sabres, and Patrick Lalime made 29 saves.

Kari Lehtonen stopped 34 shots for Atlanta, who played without star left wing Ilya Kovalychuk because of an upper-body injury. He was hurt Thursday night a 4-3 overtime win at Edmonton.

Kozlov opened the scoring on a power-play goal with 26 seconds left in the first period. He banged in a rebound after Lalime stopped an initial shot by Zach Bogosian.

In the second period, Roy fed Paille for a tying goal with 6:41 remaining. Roy chipped a loose puck into the offensive zone and backhanded a pass from the right corner to the charging Paille for a tip-in.

Roy then scored with 3:29 to go, putting Buffalo on top for good as his slap shot from the blue line was tipped by Atlanta defenseman Boris Valabik. Afinogenov made it 3-1 before the period's end by banging in a pass from Thomas Vanek.

Reasoner scored a short-handed goal with 6:34 remaining to get Atlanta to within one goal.

Lalime, making his ninth straight start, is 3-4-2 since taking over for injured starter Ryan Miller.

Atlanta's other five-game winning streak this season was done between Nov. 2-14.








  • CORRECTION
    NHL FINAL IN SHOOTOUT 1ST 2ND 3RD OT TOTAL
    --- --- --- --- -----
    ATLANTA 1 0 2 0 (1) 4
    BUFFALO 0 3 0 0 (0) 3 FINAL IN SHOOTOUT
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: ATL - (PP) VYACHESLAV KOZLOV 19 (ZACH BOGOSIAN, TOBIAS
    ENSTROM) 19:34
    2ND PRD: BUF - DANIEL PAILLE 9 (DEREK ROY, DREW STAFFORD) 13:19
    BUF - DEREK ROY 25 (UNA

    Thrashers 4, Sabres 3  Final - 2OTMar 14 9:56 PM


  • NHL
    END OF OT 1ST 2ND 3RD OT TOTAL
    --- --- --- --- -----
    ATLANTA 1 0 2 0 3
    BUFFALO 0 3 0 0 3 END OF OT
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: ATL - (PP) VYACHESLAV KOZLOV 19 (ZACH BOGOSIAN, TOBIAS
    ENSTROM) 19:34
    2ND PRD: BUF - DANIEL PAILLE 9 (DEREK ROY, DREW STAFFORD) 13:19
    BUF - DEREK ROY 25 (UNASSISTED) 16:31
    BUF -

    Mar 14 9:54 PM


  • NHL
    FINAL IN OT 1ST 2ND 3RD OT TOTAL
    --- --- --- --- -----
    ATLANTA 1 0 2 0 3
    BUFFALO 0 3 0 0 3 FINAL IN OT
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: ATL - (PP) VYACHESLAV KOZLOV 19 (ZACH BOGOSIAN, TOBIAS
    ENSTROM) 19:34
    2ND PRD: BUF - DANIEL PAILLE 9 (DEREK ROY, DREW STAFFORD) 13:19
    BUF - DEREK ROY 25 (UNASSISTED) 16:31


    Mar 14 9:53 PM


  • NHL
    END OF OT 1ST 2ND 3RD OT TOTAL
    --- --- --- --- -----
    ATLANTA 1 0 2 0 3
    BUFFALO 0 3 0 0 3 END OF OT
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: ATL - (PP) VYACHESLAV KOZLOV 19 (ZACH BOGOSIAN, TOBIAS
    ENSTROM) 19:34
    2ND PRD: BUF - DANIEL PAILLE 9 (DEREK ROY, DREW STAFFORD) 13:19
    BUF - DEREK ROY 25 (UNASSISTED) 16:31
    BUF -

    Mar 14 9:41 PM


  • NHL
    END OF THE 3RD GOING INTO OT
    1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    ATLANTA 1 0 2 3
    BUFFALO 0 3 0 3 GOING INTO OT
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: ATL - (PP) VYACHESLAV KOZLOV 19 (ZACH BOGOSIAN, TOBIAS
    ENSTROM) 19:34
    2ND PRD: BUF - DANIEL PAILLE 9 (DEREK ROY, DREW STAFFORD) 13:19
    BUF - DEREK ROY 25 (UNASSISTED) 16:31
    BUF - MAXIM AFINOGENOV 4 (THO

    Mar 14 9:35 PM
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    RUWTbot Added 38 roots (Overtime)

    Thrashers 3, Sabres 3  OT - 4:55Mar 14 9:35 PM


  • NHL
    ATLANTA 3
    BUFFALO 3
    3RD PRD: ATL - TODD WHITE 19 (RON HAINSEY, TOBIAS ENSTROM) 19:56 (WITH
    EXTRA ATTACKER)

    Thrashers 3, Sabres 3  3rd - 0:04Mar 14 9:34 PM
  • 144
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    Thrashers 3, Sabres 3  3rd - 0:04Mar 14 9:34 PM
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    Thrashers 2, Sabres 3  3rd - 2:55Mar 14 9:25 PM


  • NHL
    ATLANTA 2
    BUFFALO 3
    3RD PRD: ATL - (SH) MARTY REASONER 12 (COLIN STUART) 13:26

    Thrashers 2, Sabres 3  3rd - 6:34Mar 14 9:21 PM
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    RUWTbot Added 45 roots (Close Finish)

    Thrashers 2, Sabres 3  3rd - 6:34Mar 14 9:21 PM


  • NHL
    END OF THE 2ND 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    ATLANTA 1 0 1
    BUFFALO 0 3 3 END OF THE 2ND
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: ATL - (PP) VYACHESLAV KOZLOV 19 (ZACH BOGOSIAN, TOBIAS
    ENSTROM) 19:34
    2ND PRD: BUF - DANIEL PAILLE 9 (DEREK ROY, DREW STAFFORD) 13:19
    BUF - DEREK ROY 25 (UNASSISTED) 16:31
    BUF - MAXIM AFINOGENOV 4 (THOMA

    Mar 14 8:40 PM


  • NHL
    ATLANTA 1
    BUFFALO 3
    2ND PRD: BUF - MAXIM AFINOGENOV 4 (THOMAS VANEK) 18:24

    Thrashers 1, Sabres 3  2nd - 1:36Mar 14 8:39 PM


  • NHL
    ATLANTA 1
    BUFFALO 2
    2ND PRD: BUF - DEREK ROY 25 (UNASSISTED) 16:31

    Thrashers 1, Sabres 2  2nd - 3:29Mar 14 8:30 PM
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    RUWTbot Took away 38 roots

    Thrashers 1, Sabres 2  2nd - 3:29Mar 14 8:30 PM


  • NHL
    ATLANTA 1
    BUFFALO 1
    2ND PRD: BUF - DANIEL PAILLE 9 (DEREK ROY, DREW STAFFORD) 13:19

    Thrashers 1, Sabres 1  2nd - 6:41Mar 14 8:25 PM
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    RUWTbot Added 38 roots

    Thrashers 1, Sabres 0  2nd - 7:20Mar 14 8:23 PM


  • NHL
    END OF THE 1ST 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    ATLANTA 1 1
    BUFFALO 0 0 END OF THE 1ST
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: ATL - (PP) VYACHESLAV KOZLOV 19 (ZACH BOGOSIAN, TOBIAS
    ENSTROM) 19:34
    SHOTS ON GOAL: 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    ATL 10 10
    BUF 10 10
    GOALIES: ATL - KA

    Mar 14 7:43 PM


  • NHL
    ATLANTA 1
    BUFFALO 0
    1ST PRD: ATL - (PP) VYACHESLAV KOZLOV 19 (ZACH BOGOSIAN, TOBIAS
    ENSTROM) 19:34

    Thrashers 1, Sabres 0  1st - 0:26Mar 14 7:42 PM
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    terrencejm Added 5 roots

    Thrashers vs. SabresMar 14 4:53 AM