April 18, 2013

NHL: On emotional night, Sabres beat Bruins in shootout

 BOSTON (AP) — After Ryan Miller and the Buffalo Sabres pulled out a comeback win over the Bruins, they had one last gesture to mark the significance of Boston's first pro game since the marathon bombings.

click image to enlarge

Fans hold up a sign during the second period of an NHL hockey game between the Boston Bruins and the Buffalo Sabres in Boston Wednesday, April 17, 2013. (AP Photo/Elise Amendola)

AP

Players from both teams gathered at center ice and raised their sticks in a salute to the city and fans who had shouted, "We are Boston" and "USA, USA," during the game.

The Bruins had suggested the gesture to the Sabres before Buffalo's 3-2 shootout win Wednesday night.

"Obviously, we're more than open to something like that," said Miller, the starting goalie on the U.S. Olympic team in 2010. "It's a game more about coming together and giving people here something a bit more normal today.

"I'm proud to be a part of it and just wanted to give a simple salute"

Drew Stafford scored the only shootout goal after Cody Hodgson tipped in Thomas Vanek's pass on a power play to tie the game with 26.6 seconds left in regulation.

"Late in the game there we just wanted to make sure that we got pucks at the net and weren't trying to be too fancy," Sabres interim coach Ron Rolston said.

But the Bruins still clinched a playoff berth by gaining one point.

They are tied in points with Montreal atop the Northeast Division, but have one game in hand on the Canadiens. Both teams trail Eastern Conference-leading Pittsburgh by nine points.

There was a pregame period of silence and a slideshow of scenes from the Boston Marathon in which three people died and more than 170 were wounded when two bombs went off near the finish line on Monday.

Veteran Bruins anthem singer Rene Rancourt sang the first few words then went silent and directed the fans in a full-throated rendition.

"It was extremely emotional," Boston's Brad Marchand said. "I was fighting back tears."

The 10th-place Sabres, who beat Philadelphia and Tampa Bay last weekend, are fighting to get into playoff position. They are two places and two points below the postseason cutoff, but have only four games to go.

"We have a chance to just write our own story," Miller said. "We have to win our own hockey games and maybe get some help along the way. Tonight we helped ourselves a little bit and we still have games against teams ahead of us (in the standings)."

There was heightened security at TD Garden where cars entering the garage were searched, and fans were checked with wands and patted down.

The Bruins quickly gave their fans something to cheer about when Daniel Paille scored his ninth goal of the season just 5:15 in. Vanek tied it with his Buffalo-leading 17th goal on a power play at 18:20 of the first. Chris Kelly then scored the go-ahead goal, his third tally of the season, at 14:48 of the second.

"We wanted to go out there and win that hockey game. I'm disappointed that we didn't," Kelly said. "We wanted to give the city something to be happy about."

Boston moved into second place in the Eastern Conference with 57 points and six games left. The Canadiens, who lost to Pittsburgh earlier Wednesday, have five games remaining.

The Bruins had been scheduled to play at home against the Ottawa Senators on Monday night. But less than five hours before the game was to start, the bombs exploded.

That game was postponed and rescheduled for April 28. The Celtics' scheduled home game on Tuesday night against the Indiana Pacers was cancelled and won't be rescheduled. The Red Sox play next at home on Friday night against the Kansas City Royals.

In the shootout, Tyler Seguin, Patrice Bergeron and Marchand missed for Boston. Buffalo's first two shooters, Vanek and Nathan Gerbe, also were stopped before Stafford beat Anton Khudobin.

(Continued on page 2)

Were you interviewed for this story? If so, please fill out our accuracy form

Send question/comment to the editors




Further Discussion

Here at OnlineSentinel.com we value our readers and are committed to growing our community by encouraging you to add to the discussion. To ensure conscientious dialogue we have implemented a strict no-bullying policy. To participate, you must follow our Terms of Use.

Questions about the article? Add them below and we’ll try to answer them or do a follow-up post as soon as we can. Technical problems? Email them to us with an exact description of the problem. Make sure to include:
  • Type of computer or mobile device your are using
  • Exact operating system and browser you are viewing the site on (TIP: You can easily determine your operating system here.)


High School Football 2013

Fall Sports 2012

Purchase Photos

Find more photos >>