If you would’ve told me the Buffalo Sabres would start off the 2021-2022 NHL season 3-0 for the first time since the 2008-2009 season, I would’ve thought you were crazy. However, that is the case and it’s shocking. The team has looked very good in the first three games of the season and even though it’s still early, it’s great to see if you’re a Sabres fan. In this article, I’m going to tell you why the Sabres are playing good hockey right now.
This is obvious but head coach Don Granato is the main reason why Buffalo is undefeated in their first three games. His system is working, we saw it last year and it’s paying off so far this season. In order to be a good team, you need to have a coach who knows what he is doing and a system that works. As I said earlier, the season is still very young and a lot can happen, but it helps having a coach who actually has knowledge when it comes to coaching and a system that is beneficial to the players.
A huge reason why the Sabres have been so bad the last decade, they haven’t had much scoring from the secondary lines. This year however, it’s a different story. It’s crazy that I’m saying this but Buffalo’s 4th line which includes Kyle Okposo, Cody Eakin and Zemgus Girgensons has been the Sabres best line. More players are getting involved along with the players on the 4th line but it’s definitely a good sight to see. This is great news for Buffalo and if this line can keep on playing well, then I believe the team will be in great shape going forward.
If I told you that a goaltending tandem of Craig Anderson and Dustin Tokarski would be a solid pair, what would you say to that? You would probably laugh and think I’m crazy but believe it or not, they have been solid in the first three games. It’s a small sample size obviously but after I bashed them for not thinking they would be that good, they have proved me wrong and I hope they can keep it up. The defense for the Sabres are doing well but the goaltending has really surprised me.
Shoutout to the Special Teams Units
Lastly, Buffalo’s power play and penalty kill units have been good so far. Especially the penalty kill, they have not allowed a single goal this season in three games played. Again it’s still early but this is another encouraging sign for the Sabres and hopefully they can keep it going.
Can They Keep It Rolling?
So now, it begs the question: Can the Sabres keep it rolling? If you’re a Sabres fan, you know what I mean by this. We have seen this team go on a hot streak or start the season off well then just completely fall off as the season went along. The first three games have been fun to watch this team play hockey but they have two good tests coming up to see what they are made of. On Friday night, Buffalo will host the Boston Bruins. After traveling to New Jersey for a showdown with the Devils over the weekend, the Sabres will host the defending Stanley Cup champions Tampa Bay Lightning next Monday before heading off to the West Coast. I want to see what this team can do against powerhouses in their own division. I’m loving this start but let’s see what happens going forward.
(Featured image credit to ESPN).
-Zach Jezioro (@ZachJ_13 on Twitter).
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