NEW YORK CITY (WIVB) – Mika Zibanejad scored less than five minutes into Sunday’s contest, and it was only the beginning of his big night against the Sabres. New York’s center put three in the back of the net, getting him a hat trick, his second in the last month.
Buffalo responded with a Jeff Skinner goal just a few minutes after Zibanejad’s first, and that tied the game at one. Kaapo Kakko added one for the Rangers nearly six minutes later, and Zibanejad planted his second goal in the back of the net on the Power Play in the final minutes of the opening period to give New York a 3-1 lead at first intermission.
Just over two minutes into the second, Zibanejad completed the hat trick with another score to give the Rangers a 4-1 lead, and that proved to be too much for the Sabres in the end.
Victor Olofsson added a goal late in the second, but Buffalo gave up a Power Play goal to bring the deficit back to three. The teams traded goals the rest of the way to make it 6-3 in favor of the Rangers.
The Sabres move to 13-29-7 on the season and will face the Rangers again Tuesday night at 7 p.m.