Thomas Vanek scored twice in regulation, including the tying goal with 2 seconds left, and also came through in the shootout to rally the Buffalo Sabres past the Montreal Canadiens 5-4 on Thursday night.
Buffalo rallied from a 4-2 deficit in the third period to snap a three-game skid and win for the second time in its past nine games. Vanek, the NHL's leading scorer with 10 goals and 21 points, keyed the comeback by scoring both third-period goals, his second coming during a scramble in front at 19:58. Buffalo was playing catch-up all evening in a game the Canadiens never trailed.
Vanek signed a seven-year $50 million offer sheet from the Edmonton Oilers. After losing Daniel Briere and Chris Drury the Sabres had no choice but to match the offer sheet, thus keeping Vanek under contract until at least the end of the 2013–14 season.
Vanek is carrying the Sabres. Hek upped his NHL-leading total to 21 points (10 goals, 11 assists). Because of the Vanek the Sabres stopped a three-game losing streak. They visit the Islanders on Saturday before hosting Boston on Sunday night.