BUFFALO, N.Y. (AP) — Tage Thompson had three goals and three assists for a career-high six points to lead the Buffalo Sabres to an 8-3 win over the Detroit Red Wings on Monday night.
Thompson is the sixth player in Sabres history to record six points in a game, and the first since Pat LaFontaine did it for the third time on Feb. 10, 1993. Gilbert Perreault holds the franchise record with seven points tallied on Feb. 1, 1976.
Thompson is quickly building off a breakout campaign last season, when he had a career-high 38 goals. The forward has six goals and six assists in nine games this season. He scored twice in the third period and assisted on the overtime winner in Saturday night’s 4-3 win over the Blackhawks.
“He’s a guy who can sort of take over a game and dominate,” linemate Jeff Skinner said. “He did that.”
Skinner, Rasmus Dahlin, Jack Quinn, Dylan Cozens, and Rasmus Asplund also scored for the Sabres, who won for the sixth time in nine games. Eric Comrie made 14 saves.
With 14 players on the scoresheet, the eight goals were the most Buffalo has tallied in nearly four years, since a 9-2 win against Ottawa on Nov. 3, 2018. The Sabres recorded 45 shots on goal for the third consecutive game, a franchise first.
“It’s fun watching the guys working for it,” Sabres coach Don Granato said. “We’re trying to convince all of our guys to score some of the ugly ones and the pretty ones will just fall in there. We’ve been guilty of trying to pass the puck into the net. We got more direct.”
Thompson opened the scoring on a blast from the left circle with 3:08 remaining in the first period. Jeff Skinner set up Thompson’s one-timer with a cross-ice pass.
Quinn put Buffalo ahead early in the second period, scoring his first of the season on a quick shot just under the crossbar following a nice setup by Thompson. It was the second goal in nine NHL games for Quinn, the eighth overall pick in 2020.
Skinner made it 3-1 with his 300th career goal after Thompson found him all alone in front of the Detroit net. The veteran was patient before picking out an opening on the glove side.
Thompson picked up his second of the evening on the power play with 1:30 left in the second. Seconds after hitting the post, Thompson froze both Red Wings defensemen with a toe drag before firing a wrist shot.
The Sabres scored four times in a 6 1/2-minute stretch of the third period.
Dahlin made it 5-3 with a power-play goal with 7:07 remaining. With his third assist of the night, Thompson factored on eight consecutive Sabres goal, matching team record set 30 seasons ago by LaFontaine.
Cozens made it 6-3 nearly two minutes later, and Thompson picked up the hat trick with 4:02 remaining on another highlight-reel effort, maneuvering his way around defenseman Gustav Lindstrom and then Nedeljkovic.
Asplund capped the scoring in the final minute.
Sabres defenseman Ilya Lyubushkin missed his second game in a row with a lower-body injury. Lyubushkin played through the injury in three games before being taken out of the lineup.
With the Sabres shorthanded on defense due to injuries, the team recalled Jeremy Davies from Rochester of the AHL. Forward Riley Sheahan cleared waivers and was assigned to Rochester.
The Sabres conclude their four-game homestand Wednesday night against the Pittsburgh Penguins. It will be the season debut for Buffalo’s Reverse Retro jerseys with blue and gold bison logo.