BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) - Meaningful hockey returned to KeyBank Center Tuesday night, in a game that had a playoff feel to it in early December.
With a buzz in the air inside a packed arena, Sabres captain Jack Eichel provided the offensive jolt, netting two goals in the third period to give the Blue & Gold the lead with five minutes to play.
But, it wouldn't be enough as Patrick Marleau tied things up less than two minutes to later to force overtime before Auston Matthews tallied the game winner with two seconds to play in extra session, handing Buffalo a fourth straight loss, 4-3.
For Toronto, they've now won five straight.
Matthews also opened the scoring, settling a deflected puck to the ice that, before wrapping around the cage to beat Linus Ullmark and give Toronto a 1-0 lead.
Sam Reinhart answered back a few minutes later, re-directing Nathan Beaulieu's shot from the point to continue his hot streak. The winger has five goals in his last four games and has recorded at least a point in 10 of his 14 contests.
Still tied at one in the final seconds of the frame, Jake Gardiner finished off a beautiful sequence to give the Leafs a 2-1 lead as the second period came to a close.
The Sabres will look to snap their four game skid on Saturday when they host the Flyers.