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Sunday, January 2, 2011

New Year's in Buffalo, talk about a party.

Weird stuff happens on New Year's Eve and New Year's Day so it goes without saying that's multiplied when a miserable place like Buffalo, NY is involved.

The Boston Bruins scored four goals in the first period last night at the HSBC Arena but somehow ended up losing 7-6 in a shootout to the Buffalo Sabres.

Four different Bs (20-11-6) defensemen scored goals while Tyler Seguin had a goal and an assist. Brad Marchand also added a goal.

For Buffalo (16-18-4), Drew Stafford once again did his best Mario Lemieux impression that he only pulls out when he plays the Bruins. He had another hat trick against Boston (his second this season) while Jason Pominville had two goals and two assists.

2011 began like 2010 ended for Bs goaltender Tuukka Rask: terribly. He started last night but he didn't make it to the second period as Bruins head coach Claude Julien made the curious decision to yank him after the first period even though Boston led 4-3.

Andrew Ference gave the Bruins a 1-0 lead 1:29 into the game, from Adam McQuaid and Marc Savard. 37 seconds later, Pominville tied it up from Thomas Vanek and Mike Weber.

Dennis Seidenberg made it 2-1 with an unassisted goal, then Brad Marchand tipped home a shot by Johnny Boychuk who received a pass from Mark Recchi.

Thomas Vanek got Buffalo back into it with a goal from Tim Connolly and Pominville.

The first period closed with Zdeno Chara (from Patrice Bergeron and Recchi) scoring a short-handed goal but Stafford cut it to 4-3 with an unassisted goal.

With Rask (13 saves) out, Tim Thomas (16 saves) entered in the second period but he wasn't much better. Captain America, Ryan Miller (34 saves) didn't exactly have a Hall of Fame performance either but he was able to ride it out.

Stafford tied it up with the second period from Paul Gausted. A power-play goal by Pominville gave Buffalo a 5-4 lead from Andrej Sekera and Jochen Hecht.

Seguin took over in the third period with a goal (from Daniel Paille) and he found Steve Kampfer for the go-ahead tally at 6-5. Chara also assisted on Kampfer's 2nd career NHL goal.

It looked like the Bruins would get the two points but Stafford tied it up with his third goal with 28 seconds left in regulation.

After a scoreless overtime, the Sabres went 3 for 3 in the shootout (Stafford, Vanek and Tyler Ennis) while Michael Ryder and Seguin scored but the third shooter, Zdeno Chara, shot wide and it was over. I have no idea why Julien tabbed Chara to shoot since he doesn't have a move, he normally just skates down and takes a slap shot from a few feet away but whatever.

The Bs got one point but they totally choked, giving up two-goal leads twice (3-1, 4-2). Boston goes to Toronto tomorrow night to visit Phil Kessel and the Maple Leafs, who they completely own.

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