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NHL Preview from The Sports Network



Friday, November 11th (All times eastern)

Toronto Maple Leafs (8-6-2) at Buffalo Sabres (7-8-0), 8 p.m.

(Sports Network) - The Buffalo Sabres try to put the brakes on a four-game skid tonight when they welcome the Toronto Maple Leafs to HSBC Arena.

The losing streak was extended on Wednesday, as the Sabres lost, 5-3, to red- hot Carolina at home. Erik Cole scored on one of two penalty shots he was awarded in the third period and added a pair of assists to lead the Hurricanes.

Thomas Vanek netted his first two NHL goals for the Sabres, who have lost six of their last seven games. Ales Kotalik also scored and Martin Biron stopped 17 shots in defeat.

Defense and goaltending has been an issue for the Sabres, who have been outscored by a 21-11 margin over the past four tilts. Goaltender Ryan Miller, who had taken over the starting job between the pipes, is out indefinitely due to a broken thumb suffered in practice on November 2.

Buffalo will visit Ottawa on Saturday.

Toronto, meanwhile, has won two of its last three games. On Tuesday, Bryan McCabe and Jeff O'Neill each had a goal and two assists and the Leafs scored four times in the third period to record a 6-4 victory over Washington in the back end of a home-and-home at Air Canada Centre.

Mats Sundin added a goal and helped out on another for the Maple Leafs, who fought back from an early 2-0 deficit and avenged Sunday's 5-4 defeat to the Capitals. Ed Belfour made 26 saves in the win.

McCabe currently leads all NHL defensemen with 21 points (5g, 16a). His 16 helpers are also tops among the league's blueliners.

The Maple Leafs will visit Montreal on Saturday night.

Buffalo went 3-2-1 against Toronto during the 2003-04 season. However, the road team is 4-0-1 in the last five meetings.

11/11 10:36:12 ET


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