BUFFALO, N.Y. (AP) The Buffalo Sabres solved several of their season-long inconsistencies when Casey Mittelstadt scored in the fourth shootout round of a 3-2 win over the Carolina Hurricanes on Sunday night.

The victory extended the Sabres' modest winning streak to a season-high three straight - their best since a 3-0 run from April 6-10 last season. Buffalo won for just the second time in seven home games while evening its overall record at 27-27-4 - the first time the Sabres have had as many regulation wins as losses since sitting 10-10-2 on Nov. 27.

And for a team that too often loses when trailing after the first period, the Sabres improved to 5-20-2 by rallying from a pair of one-goal deficits.

“We’re not forcing anything. We’re playing as a team right now,” defenseman Rasmus Dahlin said. “It’s huge, especially at home. Now we just build off this and keep pushing.”

Defenseman Owen Power, who returned after missing six games with a left arm injury, forced overtime by scoring with 4:05 left in regulation.

Jeff Skinner also scored. Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen stopped 30 shots through overtime, and didn’t allow a goal in the shootout round.

Martin Necas had a goal and assist and Tony DeAngelo also scored for the Hurricanes who were playing on consecutive nights following a 2-1 home loss to Dallas.

Spencer Martin stopped 30 shots through overtime, and stopped three of four shootout attempts in dropping to 3-0-1 in four starts since being claimed by Carolina off waivers last month.

“We were pretty awful, to be quite honest,” coach Rod Brind’Amour said of a team playing its sixth game in 10 days.

“I kind of knew it was going to happen. We were mentally not there. And that’s what happens,” he added. “I could just feel it on the bench. We were just not sharp. And thankfully the one guy that’s been rested, Martin, was the difference tonight.”

Mittelstadt’s decisive goal came as he drove across the front of the net, where he briefly hesitated before snapping a shot inside the left post. Luukkonen then sealed the win by gloving a shot from Necas.

The goal relieved Mittelstadt’s frustration in an outing he was stopped twice, had two shots blocked and also missed the net twice.

“I think Cozy probably set me up six times. So, I owe him a few, maybe a dinner or something,” Mittelstadt said, referring to Dylan Cozens. And he might have to buy Power dinner, too, after saying he borrowed the hesitation move from his teammate on the decisive goal.

The key for the Sabres was finally building a semblance of momentum in a season they’re in jeopardy of extending their NHL-record playoff drought to a 13th consecutive season.

The teams traded goals 73 seconds apart in the third period with Necas scoring a power-play goal with 5:18 left with a one-timer from the left circle. The Sabres responded with Power tying the game by pinching into the slot and converting a pass from Peyton Krebs by snapping it inside the left post.

Hurricanes captain Jordan Staal played in his 800th career game with the franchise, joining his brother Eric, who appeared in 909 games with Carolina. The Staals are the fourth brother combination to play at least 800 games with the same team, joining Maurice and Henri Richard (Montreal), Bobby and Dennis Hull (Chicago) and Henrik and Daniel Sedin (Vancouver).


Hurricanes: At the Minnesota Wild on Tuesday night.

Sabres: At the Florida Panthers on Tuesday night.


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