Go back in time 25 years. The National Hockey League back in 1974-77 was dominated by the Broad Street Bullies and other teams that tried to imitate the aggressive style of the Philadelphia Flyers back then. That style of hockey suddenly reemerged Friday night in Buffalo's HSBC Arena as the Buffalo Sabres and the Montreal Canadiens played an old fashioned slugfest of a hockey game. The Canadiens thumped the Sabres 5-2 in a game that should have been billed Friday night Fights. This was a savage game and the Canadiens Brian Savage did his part in scoring the Habs first three goals.
Ten games into the season, and the thought of the Game 7 debacle in last year's Stanley Cup playoffs became a distant memory.
'The Sabres are 4-1 against teams that made the playoffs last season.'
'"Some teams take them lightly because they don't have Dominik in the net. That's a danger for any team. We have to address it before the game," Elias said. "Obviously, he was a big loss to that team, but it doesn't look that way yet. They're faster and they're playing with confidence."'
'The Devils lost four straight to the Sabres last season, including a 1-0 shutout by Dominik Hasek on Feb. 22 at Continental Arena.'
'Zhitnik had a team-high six assists.'
\’\”I\’ve been in this game for a very long time,\” Canadiens coach Michel Therrien said, \”and it was one of the cheapest shots I\’ve seen.\”\’
'The Sabres lost defensemen Rhett Warrener and Dmitri Kalinin during Buffalo's Friday Night Fight with the Montreal Canadiens, although neither player was hurt during one of the game's many skirmishes.'
‘The NHL also takes attempts to injure seriously, and that means Gilmour and Varada will probably be having a chat with league vice-president Colin Campbell before they play another game. There was no NHL supervisor at the game, but a league spokesman said Campbell was aware of the incident.’
'Gilmour dodged questions from the Buffalo media yesterday by electing not to partake in the morning skate.'
'Turning Point: Savage's third goal of the night snapped a 2-2 tie at 12:26 of the third period.'
'Gilmour makes no bones that he didn't like playing for Sabres coach Lindy Ruff. "After 17 seasons at centre, they asked me to play left wing and just stay in my lane," Gilmour said. "That's not my kind of game. I spent the whole season trying to make them understand that."'
'That didn't stop Montreal coach Michel Therrien from giving directing accusations at Buffalo coach Lindy Ruff after the Theodore collision. "That's two! That's two!" Therrien yelled as he pounded the glass. Ruff said his reply was, "Sit down before you make a fool out of yourself."'
'"I talked to him after, and he felt that he was trying to avoid injuring himself by going over the top of him," Buffalo coach Lindy Ruff said of Varada. "He thought that if he kept going straight he would have gone head first into the wall. If he wanted to hurt him he could have just dove right into him. I think you have to stick up for your teammates and obviously (Gilmour) should be suspended for what he did. It was blatant knee to Varada's knee."'
'Biron, 5-3-1, ranked fourth in the NHL in goals-against average (1.77) and sixth in save percentage (.930) heading into Thursday night. He has faced 230 shots, the second-most in the league.'