Jason Pominville has never struck me as the classic hockey captain. He seemed too soft and unthreatening a personality to get in his teammates’ faces and demand they be accountable every night, on every shift.

A week ago, when things were at their low point, Ville Leino said the Sabres were too nice. He said it might be healthy if they challenged each other a little more. Intended or not, it reflected poorly on the captain.

My captain would be in the mold of Chris Drury or Michael Peca, or the most revered of all, Mark Messier. But sometimes a captain does his best leading on the ice. On Saturday afternoon, Pominville led the Sabres to their most rousing home triumph of the year, a 4-3 shootout win over the Devils.

Pominville was far from perfect, like his team. He was on the ice for all three New Jersey goals, including a game-tying tally midway through the third. Still, he persevered, scoring two goals and wiring the puck past Johan Hedberg on the opening shootout try for the game-winner.

It was about time he found the score sheet. Coming into the game, Pominville had produced just one point (a goal) in his last 11 games. Not the most inspiring performance from the captain during a turbulent three-week stretch that cost Lindy Ruff his job after 16 years as the coach.