The Boston Bruins delivered a dud in Rick Nash's debut with the team in Buffalo, falling 4-1 to the last-place Buffalo Sabres.
There weren't many highlights to speak of that went the Bruins' way. Even when they played their best hockey, such as a dominant sequence of shifts at the end of the second period, they couldn't finish their opportunities. The Sabres, meanwhile, could - especially on the power play.
Ex-Bruin Benoit Pouliot got the scoring started for the Sabres just after the end of a Buffalo power play, gliding into open space and collecting a perfect rebound to bury it past Bruins goalie Anton Khudobin. Kyle Okposo followed that up just 2:05 later with a power play goal, firing the puck over Khudobin's shoulder through a screen.
Charlie McAvoy scored the lone goal for the B's. David Pastrnak won a hard-fought puck battle to feed it to the rookie defenseman, who snapped it past Sabres goalie Chad Johnson for his sixth goal of the season and first in 25 games.
But the Bruins' comeback attempt was short-lived, as Evan Rodrigues made it 3-1 just 3:25 later when he slapped a loose puck through Khudobin to the far side. Perhaps the worst breakdown for the Bruins came in the third period, when Marco Scandella beat Zdeno Chara to the puck down low and flipped it toward the net from the half-boards. Somehow, the puck snuck through Khudobin for the dagger.
The newly acquired Rick Nash led the Bruins with five shots on goal in his B's debut. After an up-and-down first period, Nash really made his presence felt in the second period with a handful of scoring chances. Firing a wrister to the far side off a drop-pass from new linemate David Krejci, Nash rang it off the post on a golden opportunity to score his first goal as a Bruin.
The Bruins (37-15-8) ended up 2-3 on their five-game road trip. Now, they get to play six straight at home in a span of 12 days. They get the Carolina Hurricanes next on Tuesday night at TD Garden.
-- By Matt Dolloff, 985TheSportsHub.com
Matt Dolloff is a digital producer for 985TheSportsHub.com. Any opinions expressed do not necessarily reflect those of 98.5 The Sports Hub, Beasley Media Group, or any subsidiaries. Have a news tip, question, or comment for Matt? Follow him on Twitter @mattdolloff or email him at [email protected].