Flames get hot in 2nd period for 7-2 win over Sabres
BUFFALO, N.Y. (AP) — The Calgary Flames scored four times in just over five minutes in their 7-2 win over the Buffalo Sabres on Saturday.
Dillon Dube had a goal and three assists for Calgary and Tyler Toffoli had two goals and an assist. Jakob Pelletier, Mikael Backlund, Nazem Kadri and Dennis Gilbert also scored, while Jacob Markstrom made 21 saves.
Tage Thompson and Casey Mittelstadt scored for the Sabres, and goalie Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen made 33 saves.
After falling behind 2-0, the Flames took control with a dominant second-period surge that saw them score four times between 2:17 and 7:39.
“It just felt like everything kind of kept coming in waves and we did a really good job,” Toffoli said. “We could tell that they were getting frustrated and we just capitalized on our opportunities.”
Pelletier, the 26th overall pick in the 2019 draft, began Calgary’s comeback with his first career goal. Backlund evened the score 20 seconds later from the right circle on a poor moment by Luukkonen.
Gilbert, a Buffalo native, scored his first goal of the season and the second of his career 4:04 into the second by collecting a drop pass and beating Luukkonen with a low slap shot.
“We maybe started a little bit slower than we would’ve liked, but we had a good response in between periods,” Gilbert said. “We had a good second and third.”
Luukkonen made one of his best saves of the season on a two-man rush 7:09 into the second, robbing Dube. But the Flames quickly struck again, making it 4-2 20 seconds later on Kadri’s shot through traffic for his 20th goal of the season.
Calgary outshot Buffalo 34-8 through two periods.
“We never found a rhythm even though we had some good energy in the first, and then we died,” Sabres coach Don Granato said. “We looked fatigued. We looked like we hadn’t played in a while.”
Toffoli made it 5-2 1:57 into the third on a tap-in and scored his second of the game to make it 6-2 with 6:55 remaining. Dube scored with 2:49 left in the game for the final margin.
Thompson opened the scoring on the power play 7:56 into the game on his 35th goal of the season. He has a career-high 69 points through 51 games.
ANDERSSON OUT AGAIN
Calgary defenseman Rasmus Andersson was held out after he was struck by a vehicle while riding a scooter in Detroit on Wednesday. Andersson has been considered day to day and isn’t expected to miss a significant amount of time. Andersson is one of Calgary’s top defensemen and has 34 points on the season.
Flames: Travel to Ottawa to play the Senators on Monday.
Sabres: Begin a three-game trip against the Los Angeles Kings on Monday.
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