Buffalo Sabres beat New Jersey Devils to extend point streak to five games

Apr 6, 2021; Newark, New Jersey, USA; Buffalo Sabres center Rasmus Asplund (74) scores a goal on New Jersey Devils goaltender Scott Wedgewood (41) during the first period at Prudential Center. Mandatory Credit: Ed Mulholland-USA TODAY Sports

Casey Mittelstadt scored a go-ahead goal midway into the third period to lift the Buffalo Sabres to a 5-3 victory over the New Jersey Devils on Tuesday in Newark, N.J.

Middelstadt joined defenseman Rasmus Dahlin with a goal and an assist as the Sabres improved to 3-0-2 during their season high-tying five-game point streak. Rasmus Asplund and blueliners Brandon Montour and Rasmus Ristolainen also tallied and Linus Ullmark finished with 27 saves.

Buffalo’s Taylor Hall was scratched with the trade deadline looming on Monday. The former Hart Trophy recipient is a pending unrestricted free agent after signing a one-year, $8 million contract this past offseason.

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Pavel Zacha and Jesper Bratt each collected a goal and an assist and defenseman Damon Severson also scored for the Devils, who have lost six of their last seven games (1-4-2).

The Sabres took advantage of Yegor Sharangovich’s tripping penalty to claim a 4-3 lead with 9:40 remaining in the third period. Middelstadt redirected Dahlin’s shot past Scott Wedgewood (13 saves) for his fourth goal of the season and third in the last four games.

Ristolainen sealed the win by scoring into an empty net with 1:31 left in the game.

Severson cleaned up a rebound following Tyce Thompson’s shot to open the scoring at 4:22 of the first period. The goal was Severson’s third of the season while the assist resulted in the first career point for Thompson, who was making his NHL debut while playing against his brother, Tage.

Asplund answered 5 1/2 minutes later with a one-timer from the right circle.

Buffalo seized a 2-1 lead with 43 seconds left in the first period after Montour caught Wedgewood out of position for his fifth goal of the season and fourth in his last five games. The Sabres’ lead didn’t last long as a Zacha shot caromed off Bratt and into the net with six-tenths of a second remaining.

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Zacha popped home his own rebound while falling to the ice to stake New Jersey to a 3-2 advantage at 11:03 of the second period.

That lead was also short-lived, as Dahlin took advantage of defenseman Ty Smith’s turnover and beat Wedgewood from in close with 4:41 left in the period.

–Field Level Media