Sunday, March 7, 2010

1st game at Madison Square Garden

Posted by Craig on 3/07/2010 4 comments
I've been in New York City for three months now and apologize for not updating again since the move!

I've been busy, settling into the new place and the new job (which I love!) and I wasn't really sure what my next blog should be about. But this is definitely worth posting about...

I was fortunate to witness this one, as my hometown Buffalo Sabres came into New York and beat the Rangers at Madison Square Garden tonight 2-1 in overtime.

The win snapped Buffalo's miserable eight-game losing streak on the road. It was also just my second time ever seeing a Sabres road game - the first was a 5-1 loss at Chicago.

Here's the game-winning goal, scored by Buffalo native Patrick Kaleta. I caught it on video via digital camera from my seat -- Section 115, Row 13.

I posted PICTURES from the game on Facebook. Find those here.

And here are my observations from this one:

-Ryan Miller: With 35 saves, sensational as usual. The Sabres definitely helped him out with great D, limiting the Rangers to mostly perimeter shots and letting Miller see the puck. The lone goal came off a rebound; Ryan had no chance with New York on the power play.

-Adam Mair and Patrick Kaleta with the goals. Great to see them on the scoresheet, they were physical, won battles and put in countless second efforts. Kaleta's game-winning goal came off a second effort and some old-fashioned hard work and getting the puck to the net.

-Thomas Vanek had a great game. Very noticeable tonight, all over the ice, great defensive plays as well as scoring chances. Strong effort.

-In his second game as a Sabre, Raffi Torres (love the pickup, by the way) seemed a little out of place. A few bad plays, missed passes and other mishaps. One line change confusion involving Torres nearly led to a Rangers goal. That said he made some nice plays too, a few big hits and you can tell he's trying. Great to see that.

-Sabres hit the Rangers stride for stride tonight and were ready from the get go, perhaps taking advantage of the fact New York was playing for the second straight night. All around great effort and an impressive road win -- that's how you do it on the road too, just keep hanging around, hanging around. Solid.

-Rangers fans are very knowledgeable of the game and respectful, at least those around me in Section 115.

-Nice to see Rangers fans cheer Ryan Miller getting second star; there was a solid "USA, USA" chant then and just prior to the game. They booed the first star though - Kaleta - no surprise there.

-MSG is a very loud and fun arena. There was lots of energy in the building.

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