Sabres/Flyers Stanley Cup ECQF Game 3 Late Recap: Déjà Vu
Stop me if you’ve heard this before: the Sabres had plenty of chances they couldn’t finish, then lost their composure and starting making mistakes like taking stupid penalties and committing turnovers in their own end.
The Flyers mentally outmatched the Sabres much of the game, taking away the home team’s advantages in net and behind the bench. They got under the Sabres’ skin, disrupted their system, and reaped the rewards of playing a stressed-out team that fell behind early and tried in vain to claw their way back.
How the Sabres come out in game 4 will set the tone for the rest of the series. Win and they’ll send the message they’re not going to lay down and die. Lose and they might as well start digging their own graves. The Sabres’ supposed game-changers need to find that extra gear and play as such. Many fans say “How goes Tyler Myers, so goes the team”, and the big sophomore needs to step up his game. The Sabres’ skaters need to abuse Brian Boucher’s shaky goaltending and nullify the Flyers’ defensemen eliminating that worry. Lastly, Lindy Ruff needs to get through to his players and keep them adjusted and sharp.
It’s a tall order, but the Sabres have shown at times that they can expose Philadelphia’s few weaknesses. The Sabres need to not fall behind early, play a tight, counter-attacking game, and force the Flyers into making the mistakes this time.