Buffalo Sabres lean on unlikely scorers to beat Detroit Red Wings, 5-1


AP Sports Writer

DETROIT — Evan Rodrigues had no goals in 25 games this season. Zach Bogosian had none in 15.

Those two droughts are over now.

Rodrigues scored twice in the first 5:00, and the Buffalo Sabres cruised to a 5-1 victory over the Detroit Red Wings on Sunday. Buffalo led 3-0 after one period.

“It was going to go in eventually, and it was obviously nice to see them go in,” Rodrigues said. “Hopefully that continues.”

Zemgus Girgensons also scored in the first period for the Sabres, and Bogosian and Rasmus Ristolainen completed the scoring for Buffalo in the third. Linus Ullmark made 21 saves.

Madison Bowey had the only goal for Detroit. Jimmy Howard had 22 stops.

The Red Wings (12-31-3) have by far the worst record in the NHL. They actually came in with a modest two-game winning streak, but Detroit couldn’t overcome its poor start in this one.

“I thought in certain areas, we took steps forward in terms of the way we want to play — the way that we have to play to be successful,” Red Wings coach Jeff Blashill said. “The puck went in the net, and you look up and it’s 5-1.”

Buffalo scored at even strength, on the power play and while short-handed in the first. Rodrigues opened the scoring from the slot at 2:39. He added another goal on the power play when he jammed at the puck from the left doorstep and it popped past Howard’s stick and in.

Girgensons scored short-handed after Detroit’s Robby Fabbri went sprawling to the ice trying to keep an errant pass inside the blue line.