After an even first period that saw both teams unable to capitalize on a handful of scoring chances, the Sabres fell into penalty trouble in the second period, taking three consecutive penalties in the first half of the period.
However, it was while the Sabres were on the power play that the Senators scored the first goal of the game. The Sabres gave up the puck in the neutral zone, and Milan Michalek carried the puck into the zone and sent a cross ice pass to Erik Karlsson, who fired a slap shot from the top of the right circle that beat Ryan Miller up high with 4:40 remaining in the second period.
The Senators then took a 2-0 lead less than two minutes later on a goal by Erik Condra. Senators defenseman Sergei Gonchar fired a shot from the point through traffic that Miller managed to stop, but gave up a rebound that eventually was cashed in on by Condra, who shot it past Miller after Kyle Turris had a backhand chance blocked.
The Sabres had two power play opportunities in the first half of the third period but couldn’t score. Then the penalty tide shifted and the Sabres took three penalties in the latter half of the third period, including two in the final five minutes that prevented them from getting any offensive pressure to try and climb back into the game.
Ottawa Senators goalie Craig Anderson continued to be the top goalie in the NHL with his second shutout of the season, stopping all 42 shots the Sabres threw at him. Anderson leads the NHL in both Save Percentage (.956) and Goals Against Average (1.36).
Sabres goalie Ryan Miller had a solid game for Buffalo, stopping 29 of 31 shots, but in a losing effort.
With the loss, the Sabres fall to 5-8-1 on the season. Their next game will be on Friday, Feb. 15 at home against the Boston Bruins.