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NHL Preview from The Sports Network



Thursday, November 15th (All times eastern)

Buffalo Sabres (6-9-1) at Ottawa Senators (14-2-0), 7:30 p.m.

(Sports Network) - The powerful Ottawa Senators will try to continue their dominance this evening, when they welcome the struggling Buffalo Sabres to Scotiabank Place.

The Senators are the best team in the NHL in the early stages of 2007-08, having posted an amazing 14-2-0 record. Ottawa's 28 points are the most in the NHL, and the team is expected to have a key contributor return to the ice tonight.

Ottawa has played its last six games without Jason Spezza, its top centerman, and still won five of those contests. Spezza, who suffered a groin pull on October 27 in New Jersey, has one goal and 12 assists in 10 games this season.

The Senators were handed just their second loss of the season last Thursday against Washington, but Ottawa rebounded with Saturday's triumph over visiting Montreal. Daniel Alfredsson scored two goals in the third period to lead the Sens past the Canadiens, 3-1.

Chris Neil also scored for the Senators while Martin Gerber turned aside 28 shots.

Ottawa, which is 9-2-0 at Scotiabank Place, is completing a four-game homestand tonight. The Sens will then begin a three-game road trip Saturday evening in Toronto.

Meanwhile, the Sabres have struggled mightily this season and have dropped five of their last six games (1-4-1). Buffalo is last in the Northeast Division -- 15 points behind Ottawa -- just one season after winning the Presidents' Trophy for having the best record in the NHL.

The Sabres last played Saturday night in Boston and were handed a close setback. Tim Thomas made 45 saves and Chuck Kobasew scored the game-winning goal as Boston clipped Buffalo, 2-1.

Daniel Paille lit the lamp for the Sabres, who have scored two goals or less in each of their last five contests. Ryan Miller was the hard-luck loser in net, allowing both Boston goals on 22 shots.

The Sabres are just 2-5-1 away from Buffalo this season and are playing the second of consecutive games on the road tonight. The Sabres will begin a three-game homestand Friday evening against Montreal.

Ottawa has taken five of the last seven meetings with the Sabres and Buffalo has been defeated in its last three trips to Scotiabank Place.

11/15 10:57:21 ET


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