Apr 20, 2011, 10:43 PM EDT
We’ve been saying all along that if the Sabres are going to win their first round series with Philadelphia and make a deep run in the playoffs, they’ll need Ryan Miller to play like the Vezina Trophy winner he was last season.
Tonight, the Sabres got that exact kind of play from Miller as he stopped 32 shots and earned the shutout on the Flyers in winning 1-0 to even their series up at 2-2.
Miller and his counterpart Brian Boucher (28 saves) were both stellar in goal but it would be Jason Pominville in the first period who would provide the games lone goal. The game had a taste of the nastiness to it as well as Flyers captain Mike Richards would get a five minute major for a questionable elbow on Sabres agitator Patrick Kaleta.
There was also a run in between Miller and Flyers agitator Dan Carcillo that saw Miller take a bit of a swing at Carcillo. That should properly amp up the nastiness for Game 5 on Friday night in Philadelphia.
These two teams have traditionally played some classic and nasty battles in the playoffs and with Ryan Miller looking like the Ryan Miller we’ve all gotten to know over the years finally, things for Philadelphia are feeling dicey. You can be as good a team as possible but if you run into a superstar, all-world goalie that can throw everything off.
For Buffalo, they’re taking the action to Philadelphia just fine and after a pair of wild games with scoring all over the place, both teams tightened things up in a big way. That sort of game plays into Buffalo’s favor because they don’t want to get into an up and down game with the offensively skilled Flyers. Philly will need to find a way to get Miller rattled in Game 5. We’re guessing the crowd at Wells Fargo Center will find a way to assist them.
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