NHL

Sabres look to keep momentum going versus Ducks

BUFFALO, N.Y. -- Two days after a shocking upset victory over the best team in the Pacific Division, the Buffalo Sabres look to do it again against the next-best team in the Pacific Division.

The Sabres (22-21-10) host the Anaheim Ducks (28-17-10) on Thursday. The game comes after a thrilling comeback win over the San Jose Sharks on Tuesday, when the Sabres erased a 4-1 deficit with three goals in a span of 3:28 midway through the third period and won in overtime.

"We've kind of had a few games like that this year where we've had to come back," Sabres center Tyler Ennis said. "I think we've got a lot of character and we knew this is playoff hockey and we can't lose."

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Evander Kane scored the winner 1:05 into overtime on his second goal of the game. Kane, receiving a feed from Jack Eichel on a 2-on-1 rush, placed a one-timer into the net before sacrificing his body and crashing hard into the boards. Matt Moulson, Ryan O'Reilly and Kyle Okposo also scored for the Sabres.

"That's probably the worst we've played and gotten a win, but in saying that we never gave up and it's a huge win for us," Okposo said. "We've got to get two points. We've been saying it for a couple months, we've got to find ways to win games and I guess that's one of the ways.

"I think we just stuck with it. Once we got that power play and we got the goal and we had the other one right away and I think we all started to believe on the bench. After they scored their fourth goal ... we just kept playing, we kept going, we kept working."

The Sabres are much-improved in the second half of the season, but need quite a run in order to make a playoff push. They are five points out of a wild-card spot and in a three-way tie for last in the Eastern Conference.

Unlike the Sharks, the Ducks come to Buffalo on a rare losing streak. The Ducks lost their first three contests on a six-game road trip and are coming off a 4-1 defeat to the New York Rangers on Tuesday despite putting 44 shots on Henrik Lundqvist.

"We need to continue supporting each other," defenseman Cam Fowler told the team website. "It's never as bad as it seems when you're going through a rut like this. We have to pull each other along and focus on the things we've done well so far."

Ryan Kesler leads the Ducks in points with 42 (18 goals, 24 assists).

Goaltender John Gibson has a goals-against average of 2.30 and a save percentage of .920. He allowed three goals on 19 shots against the Rangers but was much better in Friday's loss to the Florida Panthers, stopping 35 of 37 shots.