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National Hockey League
Buffalo 5, Vancouver 2
When: 7:00 PM ET, Tuesday, October 19, 2021
Where: KeyBank Center, Buffalo, New York
Referees: T.J. Luxmore, Kendrick Nicholson
Linesmen: Derek Nansen, Caleb Apperson
Attendance: 7376

Jeff Skinner and Tage Thompson scored 23 seconds apart early in the third period to break a tie as the Buffalo Sabres remained undefeated with a 5-2 victory over the visiting Vancouver Canucks on Tuesday night.

Kyle Okposo and Zemgus Girgensons each had a goal and an assist, Dylan Cozens contributed two assists and Rasmus Asplund added an empty-net goal for Buffalo, which improved to 3-0-0 for the first time since 2008. Craig Anderson finished with 32 saves.

Bo Horvat and Justin Dowling scored goals for Vancouver, which took its third loss in four games to start a season-opening, coast-to-coast, six-game road trip that continues on Thursday in Chicago. Thatcher Demko made 38 saves for the Canucks.

Vancouver jumped out to a 1-0 lead at the 5:57 mark of the first period, on Horvat's first goal of the season. Tanner Pearson set the score up with a backhand pass from the boards behind the net to Horvat cutting down the slot. Horvat then snapped a shot into the top right corner of the goal.

Buffalo tied it 2 1/2 minutes later on Okposo's second goal of the season and 200th of his career -- a wrist shot from the right circle past Demko's glove side. Okposo became the 61st active and 56th U.S.-born NHL player to score at least 200 goals in his career.

The Canucks regained the lead near the end of the period when Dowling, who had clanged a shot off the post a few minutes earlier, redirected Luke Schenn's bouncing shot from the slot past Anderson for his first goal of the season.

Buffalo tied it 2-2 late in the second period when Girgensons deflected Okposo's shot from the right point with the shaft of his stick under the crossbar for his second goal of the season.

The Sabres' quick two-goal spurt early in the third period produced a 4-2 lead. Skinner got the first when he roofed a backhand rebound of Colin Miller's blast from the right side of the net. It was Skinner's first goal of the season and the 266th of his career. Thompson followed with his second of the season, knocking in his own rebound inside the left post.

Vancouver pulled Demko with 3:45 remaining and Asplund sealed it 50 seconds later when he picked up a rebound in front of his net and fired a shot the length of the ice for an empty-net goal.

--Field Level Media

Top Game Performances
Vancouver   Buffalo
Justin Dowling 1 Points Zemgus Girgensons 2
Justin Dowling 1 Goals Zemgus Girgensons 1
Conor Garland 1 Assists Dylan Cozens 2
N/A Power Play Goals N/A
N/A Short Handed Goals N/A
Thatcher Demko .905 Save Percentage Craig Anderson .941
Thatcher Demko 38 Saves Craig Anderson 32
Team Stats Summary
Team Shots Goals Power Play Penalty Kill Penalty Mins Face Offs Won
Vancouver 34 2 0-3 3-3 6 23
Buffalo 43 5 0-3 3-3 6 25
Upcoming Games
  • Buffalo will play their next game at home against Boston. The Sabres have a W/L % of 1.000 after a win and .000 after a loss.
  • Vancouver will play their next game on the road against Chicago. The Canucks have a W/L % of .000 after a win and .333 after a loss.