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Sabres double up Jets 4-2 Featured

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Winnipeg, Manitoba (NHN)-Rasmus Dahlin fired a pair of goals and Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen stopped 34 shots as the Buffalo Sabres downed the Winnipeg Jets by a 4-2 score Tuesday night.

The game was Dahlin's first two-goal outing of his NHL career and ended a ten-game scoring skid for him dating back to November 21st against the New York Rangers.

“It was nice for sure," said Dahlin.

"To come out in the third in the lead, it's huge. It was nice to get that goal. I think in the third we just came out and battled and played tight defensively. It was good.”

The win snapped a seven game winless streak for the Sabres and was Luukkonen's first of the NHL season.

The game marked the first time the Sabres had played in Canada in 21 months.

Anders Bjork and Jeff Skinner also scored for Buffalo.

Tage Thompson and Victor Olofsson each had a pair of assists for the Sabres.

Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen turned aside 34 shots for Buffalo, who moved to 9-15-4.

Pierre-Luc Dubois had a goal and an assist for Winnipeg.

Nikolaj Ehlers also scored for the Jets.

Connor Hellebuyck made 23 saves for Winnipeg The loss dropped the Jets to 13-10-5.

Rasmus Dahlin got Buffalo on the board on the power play 7:14 into the contest when he took a feed from Tage Thompson before moving into the center of the ice and unleashed a high wrister that hit the crossbar and past Hellebuyck to make it 1-0 Buffalo.

Pierre-Luc Dubois got the Jets on even terms at 10:04 when Evgeny Svechnikov pressured Sabres defenceman Jacob Bryson into throwing the puck right up the center of the ice onto Josh Morrissey's stick.

The Jet defenceman hit Dubois close in to the net with a pass which he kicked up to his sitck before snapping the disc past Luukkonen to score his 14th of the season.

Anders Bjork gave the Sabres the lead 11:30 into the middle frame when poor defensive coverage by the Jets resulted in Vinnie Hinistroza finding Bjork all alone in front of Hellebuyck.

Bjork beat the Winnipeg netminder with a low shot stick side to make it 2-1.

Nikolaj Ehlers tied the game just over a minute later when he found some open ice in the face and Pierre-Luc Dubois hit him with a pass from the corner which the Dane promptly one timed past Luukkonen to knot the contest at 2.

The goal was his 11th of the season.

“You feel shitty every time you lose a game and in this league it doesn’t matter who you’re playing against. Every team can win the game," said Ehlers. "And it felt shitty against Carolina and it felt shitty again today. But there’s a new game in what, two days? That’s the beauty of the league. Obviously, we’re going to look at what we did right and what we did wrong and move on. We’ve got lots of games left."

Rasmus Dahlin potted his 2nd of the night late in the second when he worked himself toward the center of the ice after Victor Olofsson hit him with a pass from the corner before unleashing a slap shot that beat Hellebuyck blocker side to give the Sabres a 3-2 lead at 19:21.

The goal was his 5th of the season.

Jeff Skinner gave Buffalo a two-goal cushion at 11:55 when he elected to shoot on a 2-on-1, snapping a shot past Hellebuyck to make it 4-2.

The goal was his 9th of the season and snapped a six-game scoring drought.

Sabres Head Coach Don Granato said he was impressed with what he saw from his young defenceman.

“He’s put the work in, and some nights, he had a hiccup there and lost an edge and turned it up and it cost us a goal in the second. But that’s what happens. he’s a great player and he’s going to make more plays than he’s going to give the other team and that’s going to be a progressive thing. Tonight was a really good vision into his future. That was a vision into his future and capabilities and nice to see. And [Henri Jokiharju] played great tonight. As a pair they were very good together. They got pucks back quick so they were on offense.”

Jets Head Coach Paul Maurice was succinct in his assessment of his club's play on the night.

“No. We skated for about 15, 20 minutes. Skated hard. And then they were faster than we were," he said.

SHOTS-BUFFALO 27 WINNIPEG 36

ATTENDANCE-13,484

Last modified on Wednesday, 15 December 2021 04:17
Philip Paul-Martin

A well rounded journalist with experience in both print and broadcast mediums, Philip has written news stories with impact, broken national news while at the CBC, anchored radio news and hosted talk show radio. His coverage includes feature writing, game stories and more in-depth pieces during the off-season as well as writing about the National Hockey League and the Winnipeg Jets. He calls Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada home.