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Thursday, February 22nd (All times eastern)

Ottawa Senators (35-22-3) at Buffalo Sabres (40-15-5), 7 p.m.

(Sports Network) - Two of the Eastern Conference's best teams begin a home- and-home series in Buffalo tonight, when the Sabres welcome the streaking Ottawa Senators to HSBC Arena.

Buffalo has won seven of its last nine contests and leads the NHL with 85 points. Meanwhile, the Senators have won five straight games and are currently tied with Pittsburgh for fourth place in the East with 73 points.

Ottawa has held the upper hand in the season series with Buffalo, winning four of the six matchups so far. The Sens have taken 10 of the last 16 overall meetings and four of their last seven tests in Buffalo.

The Sabres will make the return trip to Ottawa on Saturday night.

Buffalo is coming off Tuesday's home victory over the lowly Philadelphia Flyers. Daniel Briere posted a goal and two assists as the Sabres crushed Philly, 6-3.

Chris Drury, Jason Pominville and Derek Roy each had a goal and an assist for the Sabres, who improved to 4-0-1 on their current six-game homestand. Buffalo is 21-7-3 as the host club this season.

Adam Mair tallied his first goal in 43 games for Buffalo, while Andrew Peters scored for the first time since March 26, 2004.

The Senators were last in action on Saturday and posted a close win over the visiting Edmonton Oilers. Dean McAmmond was credited with the game-winning goal in the shootout and Ottawa escaped a late rally to defeat the Oilers, 4-3, at Scotiabank Place.

Dany Heatley, Mike Fisher and Daniel Alfredsson had goals for Ottawa, which relinquished a 3-1 lead with under five minutes remaining in regulation. Martin Gerber made 27 saves for the Senators.

This win was the 600th of Ottawa head coach Bryan Murray's career. Murray is now only the fifth coach in NHL history to reach that plateau, along with Scotty Bowman, Al Arbour, Dick Irvin and Pat Quinn.

Fisher and Peter Schaefer each come into tonight's game with six-game point streaks intact. Fisher has four goals and three assists during his tear, while Schaefer has three goals and three helpers in his run.

02/22 10:26:39 ET


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