Perhaps it's long overdue but Phil Housley's stern face late Friday night seemed to indicate his patience is wearing thin.

More than any time this season, Housley was exasperated with his team after the Buffalo Sabres' 3-1 loss to the Detroit Red Wings in Little Caesars Arena.

It was a game with a whole lot of nothing for the Sabres, who are 5-10-4. The Eastern Conference's last-place team managed just 20 shots on goal and only 37 attempts. They took undisciplined penalties, which hindered any chance at building momentum even though the penalty killers went 5 for 5. They seemed a step behind all night.

Housley, who has routinely tried to put lipstick on a pig after bad outings this season, didn't go down that path this time.

"We've got to be smarter," Housley said. "We just got outbattled, outworked and outcompeted tonight. At times we even looked slow and I don't know why that is. We played one game in six nights. It's disappointing."

Housley's system is predicated on speed. You could have fooled anyone watching this snoozer.

The Sabres had just 10 shots on goal through two periods and the total of 20 was a season-low. No one on the roster had more than two.