NHL Preview from The Sports Network|
Tuesday, March 10th
(All times eastern)
Buffalo Sabres (33-26-7) at Philadelphia Flyers (35-19-10), 7 p.m.
(Sports Network) - The Buffalo Sabres will try to help their playoff chances
by avoiding a second straight loss when they visit the Philadelphia Flyers for
tonight's clash at the Wachovia Center.
The Sabres have lost four of their last six games and have fallen to 10th in
the Eastern Conference and are currently three points out of a playoff berth.
Buffalo is trying to get back to the postseason after missing out on the
tournament last season.
Buffalo had a two-game winning streak halted its last time on the ice, as it
was dealt a 6-3 loss Saturday in Ottawa. Daniel Alfredsson and Nick Foligno
both scored twice, as the Senators doubled up the Sabres at Scotiabank Place.
Drew Stafford, Thomas Vanek and Jochen Hecht each notched a power-play goal
for the Sabres. Toni Lydman collected two assists and Patrick Lalime
surrendered all six goals on 36 shots in defeat.
Sabres forward Maxim Afinogenov missed Saturday's game after hurting his neck
in a contest against visiting Phoenix the previous night. The veteran right
wing has two goals and 12 goals while playing in just 36 games during an
injury plagued season, but he is expected to be back in the lineup tonight.
Buffalo is wrapping up a brief two-game road trip tonight and will play its
next two games on home ice against Florida and Atlanta. The Sabres are 14-14-5
as the visiting team this year and have lost four straight and six of their
last seven road tests.
The Flyers, who are fourth in the East with 80 points, have won two of their
last three games and are coming off Saturday's win over visiting Nashville.
Joffrey Lupul tallied twice to lead Philadelphia past the Predators, 4-1.
Mike Richards and Claude Giroux also provided scores for the Flyers. Martin
Biron was solid in net, making 31 stops to record his 20th win of the season.
Biron, who was drafted by Buffalo in 1995 and remained with the organization
until he was traded to Philadelphia during the 2006-07 campaign, will get the
start against his former team tonight. He is 4-2-1 with a 3.19 GAA and .901
save percentage in seven career outings against the Sabres.
Flyers forward Danny Briere hopes to return to the ice after missing the last
game with a groin ailment. Briere, who is questionable for tonight's test,
suffered the injury last Thursday against Calgary in just his third game back
after he missed 36 contests with the lingering effects of a groin strain.
Briere, who played parts of four seasons with Buffalo before signing with
Philly after the 2006-07 season, has picked up five goals and nine points in
just 12 games this season.
Philadelphia has split the first two tests of a five-game homestand and is
19-9-4 as the host this season. The Flyers will host Washington on Thursday
before closing the stand Saturday against the New York Rangers.
The Flyers have won both meetings against Buffalo this season and the clubs
have split the last six encounters. The Sabres have taken five of their last
seven outings in Philadelphia.
03/10 10:44:49 ET