Colorado 5, Buffalo 3

‘”You hate to have to play for pride now, but that’s what we have to do,” Meszaros said. “We have to keep playing hard.”‘

Iginla’s big night helps Avalanche hold off Sabres

‘”We didn’t start the way we wanted to and caught us a little flat-footed,” Buffalo coach Ted Nolan said. “They have high-end skill guys on their team. We had a bad line change on the first goal, the second goal we had three guys behind the goal line.”‘

Avs Hold Off Sabres 5-3

‘Lindback stopped 10 out of 12 shots in the opening period, but was replaced by Matt Hackett to start the second. Hackett surrendered goals on the first two shots he faced, upping Colorado’s lead to 4-0. Taking a nice backhand pass from Ryan O’Reilly, Tyson Barrie walked in and lifted the puck over Hackett’s glove for the third goal of the evening. Matt Duchene added his 19th about 90 seconds later, a hard wrist shot from the slot that sailed into the top corner of the net. From that point on, Colorado would manage only eight more shots on Hackett for the rest of the game, leading to a Sabres rally in the third.’

Sabres don’t tend to matchup well against the Avalanche

‘”We just didn’t start the way we wanted to and they caught us a little bit flat-footed,” said Nolan. “They got some high-end skill guys on their team…but we found a way to fight back towards the latter part of the game.”‘

Avalanche build big lead, hold on to defeat Sabres

‘The Sabres made a game of it in the third period.’

Rally in 3rd can’t push Sabres past Avalanche

‘“We just weren’t to play in the first period and a good team like Colorado, they get those goals with those mistakes,” Ristolainen said. “We had a good 20 minutes. Hopefully we can take that one and be better in Arizona.”’

Sunday’s Rochester Coverage

Amerks defeat Syracuse to win second straight (Rochester Democrat and Chronicle)
Woof! Syracuse Crunch drops dog of a game to Rochester Amerks, 2-0 (Syracuse Post Standard)
Makarov, Amerks blank Crunch (Amerks.com)
Amerks even season series with 2-0 win over Crunch (SyracuseCrunch.com)

Sabres find tank talk wearing

‘“It’s just one of those things,” coach Ted Nolan said after his team’s optional practice on Friday. “People marked that on their calendars as a special thing, and I’m not too sure how special it is to battle for where we are in the standings. I think when you’re battling for first place, that’s when your team and fans should get really excited. Not about a draft lottery.”‘

Injured Ennis may only miss one game

‘The team’s leading scorer had a goal and an assist in Thursday’s 4-3 overtime loss to Arizona but missed the third-period with a lower-body injury. Coach Ted Nolan said Ennis will miss the game against the Avalanche but could play in Monday’s rematch against the Coyotes.’

Coyotes radio analyst pleads not guilty in casino fracas

‘At Friday’s arraignment, City Court Judge JaHarr Pridgen set bail at $10,000, which Boynton was expected to post later Friday, and scheduled a pretrial conference for Wednesday.’

Fans want Sabres to lose, but it’s not personal

‘And when you focus on the future, the present becomes collateral damage.’

Sabres focused on future, not fan support

‘“I don’t think you can let anything outside the dressing room and off the ice affect how you approach the game,” Sabres winger Matt Moulson said. “We are professionals. A lot of people have things to play for. There’s a lot of different reasons to bring it every night.”’

Sabres’ Tyler Ennis enjoying special season

‘“I think he’s been having a sensational year,” Nolan said. “In particular, the last 10 games or so, his play has gone up another level. Somebody asked me, ‘What’s the ceiling on this kid?’ I’m not too sure what it is, but it’s going to be magnificent to watch.’

When Hockey Heaven became hockey hypocrisy

‘But it just feels so… unethical. Listening to the game on WGR Radio while working in the office Thursday night, you could hear a similar tone of disappointment in the journalists who cover the Sabres regularly. These are the same folks who have been sometimes harshly critical of this franchise in their own right.’

Saturday’s Colorado Coverage

Sabres-Avalanche Preview (AP)
Buffalo Sabres (20-46-8) at Colorado Avalanche (34-28-12) (The Sports Network)
Avalanche host Sabres, who won’t have Ennis (NHL.com)