VANCOUVER -- There was no shortage of offensive chances for the Buffalo Sabres here Thursday night, especially in the last 30 minutes of play. But there were simply not enough conversions.
Vancouver goalie Jacob Markstrom made 26 saves as the Canucks held off the Sabres, 2-1, in Rogers Arena. Combined with Tampa Bay's loss to Colorado, the Canucks (4-0) emerged as the NHL's only unbeaten team. Vancouver has won all four of its games at home by one goal, with the first three going into overtime over shootouts. It had not started a season 4-0 since 1992-93.
Roadie report: The Sabres fell to 1-2-1 overall and finished 1-1-1 on their sojourn through Western Canada. Still, that equals the most points they've had in these parts since they posted the same record in 1998-99.
The lone Buffalo tally: Nicholas Baptiste scored his first NHL goal with 8:37 left after a confusing sequence that saw the goal originally wiped out because it was ruled Nic Deslauriers knocked the puck in with his body. But the war room in Toronto buzzed officials on the ice and correctly pointed out the puck was kicked into the net by Canucks defenseman Alex Edler. Baptiste had chipped the puck toward the front of the net to the left of Markstrom.
Said Baptiste: "We've been emphasizing pucks to the net because we haven't shot enough the last couple games. I just tried to get it to the net and obviously it was kind of a fortunate bounce to pinball in there."
Frustrated shooters: Kyle Okposo led the Sabres with six shots on goal, all in the first two periods. Matt Moulson and Ryan O'Reilly had four apiece. None of them could crack Markstrom.
Breaking the ice: The teams played just over 31 scoreless minutes before Jannik Hansen scored at 11:10 of the second period to give Vancouver a 1-0 lead. Brandon Sutter took the shot from the right circle and Robin Lehner made a pad save but the puck dribbled away and Hansen had a tap-in.
Unfamiliar feelings: The Canucks scored the first goal for the first time in their four games and also led after two periods for the first time. They entered the game as the first team in NHL history to start a season 3-0 without leading in regulation.
Breaking the ice II: Daniel Sedin's power play goal with 10:50 left was Vancouver's first in 13 man-advantage chances this season. Conversely, it was the first goal against the Buffalo penalty killers in 12 chances.
Home cooking: The home team has won 12 of the last 14 games in this series. The Sabres dropped their fourth straight in Rogers Arena dating to a 5-3 win on March 3, 2012. They are 1-9-1 in their last 11 games here
On this date: The game came on the 40th anniversary of a 4-0 win by the Sabres over the Canucks in Memorial Auditorium on Oct. 20, 1976. Gilbert Perreault had two goals in that game and Gerry Desjardins made 29 saves for the shutout.
Scratches: Hudson Fasching sat for the second straight game and defenseman Casey Nelson was the extra blueliner for the third straight contest.
Up next: The Sabres flew home immediately the game and will take Friday off. They return to practice Saturday and don't play again until Tuesday night in Philadelphia.