Sabres 3, Flyers 2

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BUFFALO, N.Y. – Daniel Briere tipped in Jochen Hecht’s centering pass 7:31 into the second overtime to give the Buffalo Sabres a 3-2 victory over the Philadelphia Flyers in Game 1 of Eastern Conference playoff series.

Tim Connolly and Jay McKee also scored for the Sabres, who won after squandering a 2-0 lead in the postseason opener.

Philadelphia’s Simon Gagne forced overtime with a power-play goal with 1:51 left in regulation. Robert Esche was strong in stopping 55 shots, and Mike Knuble had a goal and assist for the Flyers.

With a delayed penalty being called against the Flyers, Hecht got to a loose puck in the left circle of the Philadelphia zone. Circling along the left boards, he sneaked a pass into the middle, where the wide-open Briere stuck his stick out and directed the puck past a helpless Esche.

Game 2 of the best-of-seven series is Monday night in Buffalo.

AP-ES-04-22-06 2306EDT

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