Sabres have ‘panic attack’ in 3rd period, fall to Flyers in OT for 18th straight loss

Sports

Philadelphia Flyers center Claude Giroux (28) and center Sean Couturier (14) celebrate with teammates after a game-tying goal against the Buffalo Sabres during the third period of an NHL hockey game in Buffalo, N.Y., Monday, March 29, 2021. (AP Photo/Adrian Kraus)

BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) – Buffalo’s 17-game winless streak appeared to be completely wiped away Monday night. They led 3-0 in the 3rd period and had the Philadelphia Flyers on their heels. But as the cliché saying goes: It ain’t over until it’s over.

The Flyers scored three straight in the 3rd to tie the game, and then scored the game winner less than a minute into overtime.

It’s the 18th straight game without a win for the Sabres, and the frustration could be felt from the players after the game.

“You go up 3-0 like that and especially as desperate as we are to just get two points, it’s embarrassing,” defenseman Brandon Montour said. “This whole stretch is embarrassing but especially tonight that’s, any team in the NHL I don’t care who you are that’s a win.”

They started out hot with three goals in the first two periods, and the team appeared to be playing with a lot more confidence heading into the third period.

Then the Flyers picked things up in the 3rd with an early goal from Kevin Hayes just 1:50 into the final period. Around the halfway mark of the third, Claude Giroux put his ninth goal of the season in the net to bring the score to 3-2.

Buffalo was able to hold them off until the final two minutes, and were just a foot or two away from scoring another goal to seal the win. Philadelphia pulled their goalie late in the contest, and with an empty net, Tage Thompson took a desperation shot as he was falling down to try and give the Sabres a two-goal advantage. That shot sailed wide just barely, and the score remained 3-2.

Less than 15 seconds later, Sean Couturier scored the game-tying goal that ultimately sent it to overtime.

So how did this happen? Defenseman Rasmus Dahlin described the team’s behavior as a “panic attack” late in the game that allowed the Flyers to score the game-tying and go-ahead goals.

“We haven’t been in the situation, we got panicked, the puck bounces their way and I don’t know,” Dahlin said.

Now the Sabres’ winless streak is at 18. They face the Flyers on Wednesday at 7 p.m. at KeyBank Center.

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