DON’T GET ME STARTED wonders who will be gone by the time the trade deadline arrives following the Sabres loss to the Washington Capitals.

For two periods, Buffalo played very sloppily, unlike the first period effort they gave in the previous game against Ottawa.  But the listless play allowed the Washington Capitals to come out with a 5-3 victory over Buffalo.

It started off poorly and ended poorly.  Washington scored the first goal after only 19 seconds of the first period and the best the Sabres could do was tie the game 12 seconds into the second period on the first of two goals by Cody Hodgson.  That’s when the Caps came up with 3 straight goals and they were never headed after that, despite Buffalo’s third period charge that put them only a goal out of tying it.  Washington, though, clinched it with the late goal.

The second period woes continued as Buffalo allowed 3 goals in the middle stanza when the Caps took a 4-1 lead.

Ryan Miller now has given up, I believe, 4 or more goals in 10 games this season and head coach Ron Rolston will have to determine how and when he might be using Enroth more.  It might seem that playing Miller in back-to-back games may not have been a good idea.

The loss was Buffalo’s 5th straight loss on the road and they now have lost 7 out of 8 in Washington.  The Sabres mark is now of 10-15-4.  Buffalo hasn’t won a road game since February 28th, going 0-2-2 on their recent 4 game trip.

Road failures are plaguing the team. The loss Sunday night against the Caps was the first in a stretch where they play 5 of 6 away from home.

These teams, going nowhere, met with the winner gaining 13th place in the Eastern Conference while the loser will fall into 14th place.  One point separated the teams heading into Sunday’s matchup.  That means Washington moves ahead of Buffalo in the standings while the Sabres drop to 14, just ahead of Florida.

Goalie Ryan Miller has not been the stopper a good team needs.  In the last 6 games, he’s won only once putting up a 2.88 goals against average.  He’s nearing 4 goals a game on the season.

Washington started goalie Braden Holtby, loser of his last pair of games.

As has been the case several times this year, Miller has been victimized very early in the game.  That was the case 19 seconds after the opening faceoff when Backstrom teamed up with Alex Ovechkin who pumped a snap shot past Miller to give the Caps a 1-0 lead.

For Ovechkin it was the earliest he’s ever scored a goal and it was the 16th time he’s beaten Miller during his career.

Buffalo’s Cody Hodgson did better than Ovechkin opening the second period, needing only 12 seconds to tie the game when he blasted a shot past Holtby from high between the circles.  Vanek and Pominville got assists on the quick goal.

At 3:52, Tyler Myers took a penalty and the Caps went to work.  After Miller made one great stop, Troy Brouwer took a wrist shot that beat Miller restoring the one-goal lead by Washington.

At the halfway mark of the second period, the Caps made it 3-1 on some very bad play by Buffalo. The Sabres allowed Washington to move the puck around.  It went back of the net to Brouwer who quickly backhanded a pass in front where a charging Jason Chimera put it past Miller at 9:45.

33 seconds later it was 4-1 as the Caps got into the zone where Marcus Johansson put his 3rd of the season behind Miller.  Coach Ron Rolston then called time out, displeasure shown on the faces of the Buffalonians on the bench.

Buffalo got one of the goals back at 13:27 when Ennis took a shot that was stopped by Brian Flynn, the recent call=up from Rochester, batted in the rebound making it 4-2.  It was his 3rd goal of the season.

About 5 minutes into the third period, Buffalo went on a power play and the Sabres made it a one-goal lead when Cody Hodgson pumped his 2nd of the game and 12th of the season at 5:30 on assists by Ennis and Pominville making it a 4-3 game.

With over 5 minutes left in the game, Washington just killed off a penalty when the Caps broke into the Buffalo zone and from just outside the crease, Mathieu Perreault nudged his 5th of the season to increase Washington’s lead to 5-3.

Now the Sabres will be facing the Toronto Maple Leafs plus a pair against the Montreal Canadians.

Many are making the suggestions to start using the younger players to get ready for next season since the way Buffalo is playing, the playoffs might simply be out of reach on Don’t Get Me Started.

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