Maxim Afinogenov forced overtime with 15 seconds left in regulation and then scored in a shootout, rallying the Sabres to a 5-4 victory over the Montreal Canadiens last night in Buffalo.
Buffalo's Thomas Vanek had two assists and also scored in the shootout, while the Canadiens failed on their two shootout attempts -- the last when Alex Kovalev had goaltender Ryan Miller down, but snapped his shot off the right post.
Vanek then scored on his shootout, snapping a shot past Cristobal Huet.
The Sabres won their home opener with a wild finish, three times overcoming two-goal deficits and twice in the third period.
Daniel Briere, Jiri Novotny, and Jason Pominville also scored in regulation, giving Buffalo a win in its home opener.
Saku Koivu had two goals and an assist for Montreal, while Chris Higgins had a goal and two assists and Michael Ryder added a goal and an assist. The loss spoiled Guy Carbonneau's debut as Montreal's coach.
And the Sabres comeback got a booing crowd -- unhappy with the officials after the Sabres were penalized three times in a 74-second span -- on its feet when Afinogenov forced overtime.
Canucks 3, Blue Jackets 2 -- Daniel Sedin tied the game in the closing minutes of regulation, then scored off a rebound 31 seconds into overtime to give Vancouver the victory in Columbus, Ohio.
Brendan Morrison also had a goal for the Canucks, who opened the season with a 3-1 victory at Detroit Thursday night.
Mark Hartigan had a goal and an assist and David Vyborny added a goal for Columbus, which fell to 1-4-1 in season openers.
With the Canucks trailing, 2-1, Sedin scored on a backhand pass from Markus Naslund with 2:11 left.
In the overtime, Sedin's twin brother, Henrik, who had two assists, took a pass from Daniel after a faceoff, skated behind Columbus goaltender Pascal Leclaire and tried a wraparound. The puck was blocked and bounced to Daniel, who pounced on it for the winner.
Devils 4, Hurricanes 0 -- Zach Parise scored twice and Brian Gionta had three assists to lead New Jersey past Carolina in Raleigh, N.C., last night, sending the Stanley Cup champions to a second straight home loss to open the season.
Jamie Langenbrunner and Patrik Elias also scored for the Devils and Martin Brodeur made 29 saves for his 81st career shutout.
Ducks 4, Kings 3 -- Chris Kunitz had a goal and an assist, Teemu Selanne added two assists, and Jean-Sebastien Giguere made 41 saves as host Anaheim edged Los Angeles.
The Ducks' Ryan Getzlaf snapped a 2-2 tie when he scored with 13:15 remaining, and Kunitz added a goal moments later. Lubomir Visnovsky pulled the Kings within one with his goal with 5:07 remaining, but that closed the scoring.