12/19 Recap: Byron stays hot; Butler solid in debut

Chris Butler scored his first NHL point and was +2 as Buffalo shutout Los Angeles, 5-0. The DU product logged 12:16 of time in first appearance in the bigs, playing solid on the man, and making conservative plays with the puck. Lindy Ruff managed the rookie well, keeping shifts short while allowing him to ease his way into the speed and level of things. The assist came when his low wrister from the point escaped through Jason LaBarbara's legs, and was punched home by Adam Mair to make it 2-0. Prior to the game, "Buts" tasted a few mics in the Sabres locker room. In a WJC tune-up in Toronto, Tyler Ennis skated on the top line with John Tavares and Dana Tyrell in Canada's 4-2 win over Sweden. The unit generated chances throughout, with Ennis leaving room to develop more chemistry with his new mates. Tyrell injured his leg after an attempted hit on Viktor Hedman, so we'll have to wait and see what this does to the Canadian lines moving forward. Tyler Myers had a solid outing while paired with 6'6 Keith Aulie on the towering shutdown combo. In the QMJHL, Paul Byron (+3) had a four assist night as Gatineau defeated Montreal, 5-3. With the effort, the blazing Ottawa native owns the longest current point streak in the QMJHL with 10 goals and 25 assists over his past 18 games. He is now ranked 8th in QMJHL scoring after a slow start that saw him compile three goals and ten assists in his first 14 games. Luke Adam scored his 15th of the year for the Juniors, while T.J. Brennan had a pair of assists. Jordon Southorn scored a goal and two assists as PEI was handled by Drummondville, 11-7. The Rocket, who at one point had a 4-0 lead in the first period, dropped their fifth game in a row, while the Volts forged their 17th straight victory. J.S. Allard was +1 as Quebec whipped Rimouski, 7-1. The Remparts broke the game open in the second period with three goals in :18, while Allard has just one assist in his last seven games and hasn't scored a goal since his November 23rd game-winner. Chicoutimi's Jacob Lagacé (+2) scored an empty netter as the Sags ended their four-game skid with a 4-1 win over Baie-Comeau. The goal was the 15th of the year for Lagacé. Drew Schiestel posted an assist in Niagara's 4-3 loss to Sudbury. The Dogs fell victim to a Jared Staal goal in the final minute for their sixth consecutive loss. Nick Crawford (shoulder) did not dress for Saginaw in their 4-2 loss to Windsor. The tail end of the home-and-home featured six fights, including a goalie tilt at center ice. In exhibition play, Brad Eidsness made 10 saves in split duty as North Dakota defeated the U.S. NTDP U-18, 5-2. Eidsness played the first half of the contest, getting beaten on a nice play for the first goal against, while not being to squeeze a puck in his glove for the second U18 tally. Corey Fienhage dressed for the Sioux, finishing -1 with his requisite roughing minor. In the DEL, Philip Gogulla was -1 as Cologne lost a tight one to Augsburger, 1-0. Portland's AHL game with Worcester was canceled due to inclement weather in New England.
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