The Sabres in October

October record:  3-7-2

Overall record:  3-7-2

Buffalo came into the season with some expectations, as a playoff team from the year before with it’s ‘core’ intact (for better or worse).  I felt that the changes that were made should at least be even swaps.

So what happened?  Unfortunately, there’s quite a few things that have gone wrong:

  • Jason Pominville’s injury.  He still hasn’t passed his test to get back on the ice.  Perhaps someone should send him Brain Age and a DS to work his brain out a bit.
  • The power play.  6 for 46, 13% won’t cut it.  With the close games they’ve been playing, one extra goal here or there makes all the difference.
  • Tyler Myers has struggled.  He hasn’t been the difference maker he was last year, though I think he might be coming around.  He’s still scoring, including having 2 of the 6 PPG.
  • Ryan Miller has been uneven.  He’s currently sporting a pedestrian .903 save percentage.  He’s bookended starts where he sparkled with games where he…hasn’t.  Not much help in front but some stolen games could be all they need to get on a roll.
  • Craig Rivet, benched.  Not good when you have to bench your captain.

There is reason for hope, and some positive things to build on however:

  • Derek Roy.  He’s a point per game, with 6 goals (3 on the PP), and tied the recent Atlanta game with 8 seconds left to at least get the team a loser point.
  • Steve Montador is +9, which is part his good play, and part the competition he faces.  Still, he’s been solid since last year, so it’s good to see him getting some recognition.
  • Tyler Ennis and Drew Stafford have been at or above my expectations, combining for 5 goals and 14 points.  Both are solidly plus players.

In reality, the Sabres still only sit 2 games out of a playoff spot, with 70 more to play.  They have a goalie that has yet to play his best, and injured players that will be coming back.  The leash is short, though, before a ‘shake-up’ change begins to be something that I’d agitate for.  Still looking at you, Timmy…

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