Sabres spoil Stamkos' return with 3-1 win

Published on NewsOK Modified: March 6, 2014 at 10:24 pm •  Published: March 6, 2014
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TAMPA, Fla. (AP) — Jhonas Enroth stole the spotlight from Tampa Bay star Steven Stamkos.

Enroth made 43 saves to spoil the return of Stamkos and the Buffalo Sabres beat the Lightning 3-1 on Thursday night.

Stamkos had been sidelined since breaking his right shin Nov. 11 at Boston, causing him to miss 45 games. The center received a partial standing ovation during pregame introductions, when it was announced that he is the new team captain.

"For the most part I felt good," said Stamkos, who played 21:03. "It's a step in the right direction. You can feel it a little out there as the play progresses, but I felt like I played a lot tonight and felt pretty good. As the game went on, my timing felt great with the puck."

Right wing Ryan Callahan, acquired Wednesday from the New York Rangers for former Tampa Bay captain Martin St. Louis, made his Lightning debut.

"As the game went on, I got more and more comfortable with who I was playing with," Callahan said. "More comfortable on the ice."

Tyler Myers, Marcus Foligno and Cody Hodgson scored for the Sabres. Enroth stopped a combined nine shots by Stamkos (five) and Callahan (four).

"When we get good goaltending, we have a chance to win," Buffalo interim coach Ted Nolan said. "We were very opportunistic on our chances. Jhonas was the backbone, for sure."

Tyler Johnson ended Enroth's shutout bid with a short-handed goal at 17:31 of the third.

"I'm pretty (upset) that I didn't get the shutout, but that's hockey, I guess," Enroth said.

The Lightning have dropped four of five since the end of the Olympic break.

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