From the Locker Room: Sabres-Blue Jackets

January 11, 2018

The Buffalo Sabres welcomed the Columbus Blue Jackets into KeyBank Center for the team's second consecutive home game. Buffalo dropped their most recent decision in the friendly confines on Tuesday night to the Winnipeg Jets by a final score of 7-4, and after some scuffles in practice yesterday the Sabres were looking to translate that fire and emotion onto the ice come game-action.

Columbus racked up 45 shots, but it was to no avail. Buffalo prevailed by a final score of 3-1, highlighted by Brendan Guhle's first NHL point, Jack Eichel's empty-net goal with seconds left in regulation, and Linus Ullmark's 44-save performance in his season debut.

Go inside the locker room to hear from Kyle Okposo, Benoit Pouliot, Linus Ullmark and Phil Housley following the victory.


Kyle Okposo:

On the effort: "I thought we did a pretty good job defending. We'll take the win. Defensively, I think we were harder, and quicker to close. Linus [Ullmark] did a heck of a job in goal. We supported each other."

On Ullmark's incredible night in net: "I thought he was really compact and calm in net. That was the first game I've ever seen him play live. Obviously, though, we don't want to give up 45 shots."



Benoit Pouliot:

On why he played better after a scratch: "I tried to be harder on the forecheck, [dish out] a few more hits, and not play on the outside as much. Tried to play more on the inside. I tried to do that a little more tonight."

On his mindset since the scratching: "It's tough when you don't play like that. I didn't have anything to say about it. I totally agreed; with the way I was playing, I wasn't playing good. Five days off now, and we'll see after that."



Linus Ullmark:

On playing controlled: "I've always tried to be calm; a goalie that the team can feed off of. I've always tried to stay focused and calm."

Bliss: "I was just so happy we pulled it off. It's been tough for the guys up here."



Phil Housley:

On the strong all-around effort: "Our feet were moving, we were coming back hard. Plus, we get that all-important first goal. We knew they were going to have a push and I think we weathered that in the third period. It's good to see Linus stepping in for us. He made some really key saves in the game."

On Brendan Guhle: "He wants to attack the game in a good way... all the things he's doing, he's trying to do it the right way. That's what we need from our defense."