Vrbata scored the tying goal with 9.6 seconds left in
regulation, and DesRochers stopped 32 shots as Carolina rallied to
beat the Buffalo Sabres 3-2 in overtime Wednesday night. Craig
Adams scored on a wrist shot just inside the blue line with 1:19
left in overtime to extend Carolina's winning streak to a
season-long four games.
Vrbata, acquired from Colorado on Tuesday, was all alone when he
took a pass in front of the net from Ron Francis and fired it past
"I just happened to be open and (Francis) just tossed an
unbelievable pass,'' Vrbata said. "I had pretty much an open
Vrbata impressed his new team with more than just his scoring.
"He has a good sense of offense and skates very, very well,''
Carolina coach Paul Maurice said. "He is a very highly skilled
young player and he loves to play.''
DesRochers, who played nine games with Phoenix this season
before being traded to Carolina in December, made several key saves
in the third period.
"I thought he played outstanding,'' Adams said. "He kept us in
the game when our defensive zone coverage was breaking down from
time to time. He made some big saves, especially in the third
Sabres coach Lindy Ruff said Buffalo didn't capitalize on its
"If you look at the first two periods, we traded chances with
them,'' Ruff said. "In the third period, we played a solid
Biron, who stopped 31 shots for Buffalo, said he should have
been in better position to save the winning goal.
"(Adams) came right down the middle,'' he said. "I went out to
the top of the crease to play him, but I must have been a half a
step over to my right, where I couldn't reach it.''
Francis made it 2-1 when he took a pass from Ryan Bayda and
fired a slap shot from the left face-off circle past Biron on the
glove side. Bayda has points in five straight games and 11 points
in his first 14 NHL games.
Buffalo opened the scoring with 1:49 left in the first when
Jason Botterill redirected a pass from Eric Boulton to Mair in
front of the net, who put it by DesRochers for his sixth goal.
Less than a minute later, Connolly took a pass from Taylor Pyatt
alone in the slot, deked several times and backhanded it by
DesRochers into the top-left corner for his 10th of the season.
Buffalo's Miroslav Satan had his nine-game point streak snapped.
He hit the post with a shot in the third period.
The loss prevented Ruff from becoming Buffalo's all-time wins
Carolina went 0-for-3 on the power play and is seven for its
last 69 with the man advantage.
Sabres F Curtis Brown hurt his right knee and could miss up
to two weeks. D Dmitiri Kalinin hurt his left shoulder and will
miss two weeks. ... Sabres F Daniel Briere debuted after being
acquired Tuesday from Phoenix and took an obstruction hooking
penalty 11 seconds into the game. ... B. Thomas Golisano, who is
interested in buying the Sabres, attended the game. ... Francis has
36 goals and 111 points in 121 games against Buffalo. ... Buffalo
scratched D Radoslav Hecl (concussion). Carolina scratched F
Jan Hlavac (hand). ... The Hurricanes are 2-11-2 on Wednesdays this
Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press
Arena: First Niagara Center Location: Buffalo, New York
Referees: Mike Leggo, Craig Spada Linesmen: Anthony Sericolo
Attendance: 15,425 (82.5% full)
Team Stat Comparison
Power Play Goals
Power Play Opportunities
Shots on Goal
Adam Mair (6)
Assists: Jason Botterill, Eric Boulton
Tim Connolly (9)
Assists: Taylor Pyatt, Maxim Afinogenov
Ron Francis (21)
Assists: Ryan Bayda, Bruno St. Jacques
Radim Vrbata (12)
Assists: Ron Francis, Bret Hedican
Craig Adams (6)
Assists: Kevyn Adams, Bruno St. Jacques