NHL Preview from The Sports Network
Tuesday, February 17th (All times eastern)
Buffalo Sabres (29-22-6) at Toronto Maple Leafs (21-25-10), 7 p.m.
(Sports Network) - The Toronto Maple Leafs will try to win back-to-back games for the first time this month when they welcome the Buffalo Sabres for tonight's Northeast Division clash at Air Canada Centre.
The Leafs are 2-2-2 in February and are coming off Saturday's blowout win over the visiting Pittsburgh Penguins. Toronto's 6-2 triumph over the Pens may have had something to do with the firing of Pittsburgh head coach Michel Therrien on Sunday.
Jason Blake had two goals to kick start Toronto's five-goal third period, as the Maple Leafs routed the visiting Penguins. The victory secured a win in the season series against Pittsburgh, as the Leafs went 3-1-0 against the Pens this season.
Matt Stajan and Nik Antropov each had a goal and two assists for Toronto, which snapped a two-game losing streak in the opener of a four-game homestand. Alexei Ponikarovsky added a goal and assist, while John Mitchell also tallied for the Leafs.
Vesa Toskala gave up two early goals, but stopped 25-of-27 shots overall in the win.
Toronto is 10-10-6 as the host this year and it has won two of its last three home tests.
The Sabres have lost three of their last four games and are coming off Sunday's setback to visiting Carolina. Eric Staal had a goal and two assists while Cam Ward made 36 saves to lift the Hurricanes to a 3-0 decision at HSBC Arena.
Ryan Miller allowed two goals on 18 shots in the first period, and Patrick Lalime stopped 28-of-29 shots in the final two frames.
Drew Stafford led the Sabres with six shots, as Buffalo was shut out for the first time since December 1 against Nashville.
Buffalo is playing the first of two straight on the road tonight and will also visit Philadelphia on Thursday. The Sabres are 13-11-4 as the guest this year and have lost three of their last four road tests.
The Sabres are currently in the playoff picture as they are tied with Florida for the final two postseason berths in the Eastern Conference.
Buffalo has taken two of three from the Leafs this season and has won three of four and six of the last eight meetings in this series. The Sabres have also come out on top in four straight and eight of their last 10 trips to Toronto.
02/17 10:49:34 ET