"Sabres Flashback Friday": Series 1, Episode 1

Because writing current articles about this year’s Sabres team can be a bit…redundant, I have chosen to launch a new series of articles focusing on some of the greatest moments in Sabres history. Each week I will be highlighting a significant game, or event, that took place around the same time the article is being posted. The series will be titled “Sabres Flashback Fridays”. A very lame name for the series, but this is just the beginning so I am open to any suggestions in regards to the name of the series. Feel free to comment below the “Sabres Flashback Friday” articles with some more creative names and maybe we can work something out.

For each article I will try my best to post some related videos and the lineup of the Sabres team that is being highlighted. My intentions are to relive some of the most memorable days in the history of hockey for the city of Buffalo. 

Date: February 26th, 2011
Game: Buffalo Sabres vs. Detroit Red Wings
Goal Song: “Hell Yeah” by Rev Theory
Buffalo Sabres (29-25-6)

Forwards
*Ennis*-Hecht-Stafford
Vanek-Connolly-Pominville
Gerbe-Gaustad-Kaleta
Niedermayer-*McCormick*-Grier

Defenseman
Butler-Myers
Sekera-Montador
Morrison-*Weber*

*denotes still on current team

Starting Goaltenders: Joey MacDonald (DET) vs. Ryan Miller (BUF)
With playoff contentions running steep for both teams in this late February game, Detroit visited Buffalo boasting a 6-1-0 record in their last 7 games at HSBC Arena. Ryan Miller got the obvious nod for Buffalo in net. At this time, his career record against Detroit was 2-5-1 with 3.50 goals against average and a .896 SV %. Playing a strong game all three periods, the wheels seemed to fall off a very tired Sabres team late in the third when the Red Wings were able to tie it up at two a piece and force the overtime period and eventual shootout.

Highlight Player: Andrej Sekera
In his return to lineup after being benched due to “a lack of effort,” Andrej Sekera lit up the score sheet tallying his 2nd goal of the season (1st in 46 games) and adding an assist on Mike Grier’s 5th goal of the season. Apparently a little taste of the bench was all that Sekera needed as he would go on to pick up two more points in the next game, a 3-2 win, against the New York Rangers (3/1/11). Here is a look at the Sekera goal, note the crowd’s electricity in HSBC:

Andrej Sekera rips a backhander top corner to open the scoring for the Buffalo Sabres against the Red Wings

How fitting for Sekera to be the highlight player after making trade headlines this week. Yesterday, Sekera (who was playing on the Carolina Hurricanes) was traded to the LA Kings in exchange for a conditional first-round pick and prospect Roland McKeown. He is an unrestricted free agent at the end of this year and will join ex-Sabres Robyn Regehr, Brayden McNabb, and Jamie McBain on the King's blue line. 

Result: 3-2 (SO) Buffalo Loss
After tying it up late in the third, Detroit forward Jiri Hudler would follow in the steps of Pavel Datsyuk and score the game-winning goal in the shootout on a backhand wrister over the glove of Ryan Miller. It was clear that both Datsyuk and Hudler had Miller’s number, as their moves were almost identical in the shootout. Here’s a quick look at the shootout:

Be looking for episode 2 to be released next Friday. In the meantime, head on over to @TheHerdReport on Twitter and Facebook to get up-to-date Buffalo sports news. We will have full coverage leading up to and following the Monday trade deadline.