Sabres looking to take advantage of reeling Flyers

BUFFALO, N.Y. -- The Buffalo Sabres picked up their best win of the season on Saturday against the Winnipeg Jets and are hoping to use it as a stepping stone for the rest of the year.

On Saturday, the Sabres overcame a 3-1 deficit with three third-period goals in a span of 4:42 to come away with a 4-3 victory. They'll look to take that momentum into Tuesday's home game against the Philadelphia Flyers.

"It has the feel of a turnaround game," Sabres head coach Dan Bylsma said after the win. "We needed that in the game and we got it but it's also a big comeback for the boys. It's a big way to respond in the third period and we left it all out there. We played hard in the third period and came all the way back to get the win. It feels like a big game for us."

In that game, defenseman Jake McCabe ignited Buffalo's comeback with a devastating -- and clean -- hit on Jets rookie star Patrik Laine late in the second period. Marcus Foligno, Zemgus Girgensons and captain Brian Gionta scored in the third to put away the Jets.

It was a pleasant change of pace for the Sabres, who have seen several late leads slip away this season and have been dreadful in games that go to overtime.

"It's nice to finish this one out and be on the opposing side of something like that instead of giving up the lead," Buffalo center Jack Eichel said.

Newcomer Kyle Okposo leads the Sabres in scoring with 27 points (12 goals, 15 assists). Defenseman Rasmus Ristolainen has been having an excellent season on the blue line and is second in points with 26. Sam Reinhart is quietly third on the team with 24.

"Just how I'm feeling consistency-wise, the consistency has stepped up and in an 82-game schedule that's the most important thing you can have," Reinhart said, according to the team's website.

The Flyers are still looking to regain their form a month ago. The Flyers had a 10-game unbeaten streak from Nov. 27 to Dec. 14 but have fallen on hard times since then. Since the streak ended, the Flyers have lost eight of their last 10 games.

"The games are so tight that the smallest things can determine between winning or losing," Flyers goaltender Steve Mason said last week, according to the team's website. "Even in the games when we were winning 10 in a row, some of those games could have gone either way. It's a tight league and no games are easy. We're going through a tough stretch, (and) it's just a matter of sticking with it here, not getting discouraged and keep pushing forward."

Philadelphia is coming off a 2-1 overtime loss to Columbus on Sunday.

Jakub Voracek leads the Flyers in points with 39 (13 goals, 26 assists). Captain Claude Giroux is second on the team in points with 34 (10 goals, 24 assists).
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