When Rasmus Dahlin's name was called in the fourth shootout round Monday night, the 19-year-old defenseman quickly decided to borrow a move from a former Buffalo Sabres forward.
Dahlin skated toward the net, faked a slap shot and rifled the puck between the legs of Washington Capitals goalie Braden Holtby for the first goal of the shootout, putting the Sabres in position to snap a six-game losing streak.
Though Evgeny Kuznetsov extended the game by scoring moments later and Dominik Kahun delivered the Sabres a 3-2 win in the seventh round, Dahlin's composure was impressive considering it was his first career NHL attempt.
The genius behind the move: Linus Omark, who played 13 games for the Sabres in 2013-14. Omark, a 33-year-old who is also of Swedish descent, appeared in only 79 NHL games and has spent the past five seasons in the Kontinental Hockey League.
"When (coach Ralph Krueger) said my name, I got really happy and I just went out there and tried something funny and it worked out," Dahlin said. "It was good."
A former teammate in Sweden also scored with the move, but Omark inspired Dahlin, a former first overall draft pick, to attempt it when the Sabres were in need of a goal.
— Buffalo Hockey moments (@SabresPlays) March 10, 2020
Dahlin also assisted on regulation goals by Victor Olofsson and Jack Eichel. Dahlin's 36 assists through 59 games surpassed his total from his 82-game rookie season. His 71 career assists are the 12th-most by a teenager in NHL history, only one fewer than Brian Bellows and Bobby Carpenter.
Dahlin has two goals with 17 assists for 19 points over his last 25 games. According to his former Frolunda teammate Olofsson, Dahlin never took shootouts during games in the Swedish Hockey League. Most of Dahlin's attempts were in practice and the Sabres haven't spent much time on them under Krueger.
Dahlin recalled being in line to shoot for the Sabres one time last season, but the game ended before his turn.
Omark, who was acquired by the Sabres from Edmonton for a conditional sixth-round pick in December 2013, scored using the same move with the Oilers on Dec. 10, 2010. He did a spin as soon as he collected the puck at center ice, faked a slap shot from the slot and, like Dahlin, pushed the puck between the leg pads of Tampa Bay Lightning goalie Dan Ellis for a 4-3 win.
"I didn't do the spin-o-rama – if you remember it," Dahlin said. "A little bit more simple."
Story topics: Rasmus Dahlin