Sabres top Leafs 1-0 in pre-season play on Moulson shootout goal
Toronto Maple Leafs' Nazem Kadri tries to avoid Buffalo Sabres defenders Cole Schneider (10) and Alexander Nylander during pre-season NHL action at the Meridian Centre in St. Catherines on Thursday, Sept. 29, 2016. (The Canadian Press/Geoff Robins)
Carol Phillips, The Canadian Press
Published Thursday, September 29, 2016 10:25PM EDT
Last Updated Thursday, September 29, 2016 10:34PM EDT
ST. CATHARINES, Ont. -- Matt Moulson scored the only goal in a shootout as the Buffalo Sabres defeated the Toronto Maple Leafs 1-0 in pre-season play at the Meridian Centre.
Moulson was Buffalo's fourth shooter and the eighth overall. Anders Nilsson earned the shutout, stopping 23 shots through regulation and overtime and all four Toronto shooters in the shootout.
The 5,000-seat arena is home to the Ontario Hockey League's Niagara Ice Dogs, and geographically not quite midway between Toronto and Buffalo.
There was no Auston Matthews on the ice. Toronto's first-overall draft pick is expected to make his debut on Friday in Buffalo. And there was no Mitch Marner, last year's fourth-overall pick who played in Halifax on Monday in the first pre-season game. He is also expected to play in Buffalo.
Buffalo's Jack Eichel, last year's second-overall pick behind Connor McDavid, also did not dress.
The feature matchup in St. Catharines, Ont., was between brothers William (2014, eighth overall) and Alex Nylander (2016, eighth overall), who had never played each other until Thursday. Neither got on the scoresheet.
Buffalo outshot Toronto 38-23.
Garret Sparks started in net for Toronto and stopped all 17 shots he faced before being replaced with 7:31 left in the second by Kasimir Kaskisuo, who took the loss after being beaten by Moulson in the shootout.
With the World Cup of Hockey taking over the Air Canada Centre, the Leafs have taken their pre-season show on the road. They lost their first game 6-3 to Ottawa in Halifax on Monday and play in Buffalo on Friday night before heading back to the ACC for an Oct. 2 matchup against Montreal.