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Red Wings beat Sabres 4-2
Question of the Day
As special as it was to pass Jack Adams’ franchise win total, making the playoffs is the more immediate priority.
Darren Helm scored the go-ahead goal 3:33 into the third period to spark a three-goal outburst and inch Detroit to the cusp of clinching a playoff berth following a 4-2 win over the Buffalo Sabres on Tuesday night.
“The win tonight is way more important than that,” Babcock said, when asked about the significance of earning his 414th career victory, one more than Adams.
“But what I would say to you is these are things you think about the summer. And I’m thrilled.”
Babcock then shifted his attention to his team’s next test. The Red Wings (38-27-14) travel to play Pittsburgh on Wednesday needing only one point to secure one of the Eastern Conference’s two wild-card playoff spots, and extend the team’s run of postseason berths to 23 straight seasons.
“I know we’ve got a game in Pittsburgh tomorrow. We’re going to enjoy this tonight,” Babcock said, noting the game at Pittsburgh could potentially be a first-round playoff preview. “The reality is, it’s an important game tomorrow.”
Zemgus Girgensons scored both goals for the Sabres (21-49-9), who are already guaranteed of finishing in last place once the season ends on Sunday.
“It’s one good step in the right direction,” Howard said. “We’ve got to find a way to get a point or two points there tomorrow and keep it rolling, because you want to feel good going into the playoffs.”
His best stops came on bang-bang chances. After turning aside Cody Hodgson’s hard shot from the left circle, Howard kicked out his right pad to foil Rasmus Ristolainen’s attempt to convert the rebound.
Sabres coach Ted Nolan said coming up empty on the power play changed the game’s momentum.
“When you play a good team like Detroit, they know how to close deals. We have a 5-on-3 with a chance to go ahead, we don’t do it, and that’s what happens,” Nolan said. “You look at the things we didn’t do right.”
Both parties recognize the Democrats' scam
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