Housley: Our guys are motivated to ‘climb the ladder’

December 14, 2017
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With seven games remaining in the 2017 calendar year, the Buffalo Sabres have started to develop a positive trend.

The Sabres have notched six points in their last four games, starting December 5 with a 4–2 road win over the Colorado Avalanche. Prior to that game, Buffalo hadn’t won in Denver in over 12 years.

Despite strong performances against the Chicago Blackhawks and the St. Louis Blues, the Sabres lost each of those games in overtime.

This past Tuesday, the Sabres' offense came to life when they scored three goals in the second period in a 3-2 win over the Ottawa Senators at KeyBank Center. Those goals guided them to their fourth straight win over Ottawa, and sent the fans home happy for a change.

Head coach Phil Housley expressed pleasure when discussing his team’s performance against the Senators.

“I thought it was one of our better offensive zone games,” Housley said with Jeremy White Wednesday morning on WGR. “We generated a lot of zone time. It looked like we were fluid and we’re working together. That’s the type of game we want to play.”

This streak has triggered a positive atmosphere in the Sabres organization as the team has shown improvement while playing some of the best teams in the league.

“We’re doing really well against really good hockey teams, and then we come home and get a huge win,” Housley said. “I think our fans needed a win. It was great to see the response coming back, and hopefully we can carry this forward.”

The Sabres have struggled to develop a fast-paced rhythm in a lot of games this season, which has attributed to their sloppy record. Housley believes that this problem can be resolved by correcting other issues.

“In the neutral zone, you have to plan your attack accordingly,” Housley said. “Sometimes we slow it down and we don’t work back to the puck. It looks like we don’t have any speed, but when we do the right things we’re a very fast team.”

The Sabres have a record of 8–17–6 and are preparing for Thursday’s game in Philadelphia against the Flyers. In order to extend the streak, Housley believes his team has to focus on one game at a time.

“I think we just got to worry about ourselves and how we approach the game,” Housley said. “Now that we gotten some points in the last four games, we’re starting to try and catch some teams. We’ve got our work cut out for us and we got to continue to build.”

You can listen to Housley’s entire interview with Jeremy here: