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Saturday, December 6th (All times eastern)

Chicago Blackhawks (6-13-4-3) at New York Islanders (9-13-2-0), 7 p.m.

(Sports Network) - The two sorriest clubs in the National Hockey League will enjoy each other's company tonight when the New York Islanders invite the Chicago Blackhawks to Nassau Coliseum.

Both clubs have lost seven straight, and the Blackhawks are winless in the last their last 12 (0-8-1-3).

Chicago's dive continued Wednesday with a 3-2 home loss to Buffalo. Dmitri Kalinin and Maxim Afinogenov scored in the third period as the Sabres held on for the decision.

Bryan Berard and Brett McLean both scored for the Blackhawks, who had their winless streak extended to 12 games (0-8-1-3). Chicago remains without injured cogs Eric Daze and Alexei Zhamnov (both back surgery) and goaltender Jocelyn Thibault (hip surgery).

Michael Leighton, who has been sharing net duties with Craig Anderson in Thibault's absence, finished with 25 saves.

The Blackhawks' current winless skid is its longest since the lockout- shortened 1994-95 season. Chicago, losers of seven straight on the road, will host Phoenix on Sunday.

New York, meanwhile, continued its woes Thursday, as Brian Leetch scored twice to lead the rival Rangers to a 4-2 win over the Isles in a scrappy contest at Nassau.

The Rangers took advantage of a costly major penalty called against Islander captain Michael Peca in the middle period, scoring twice during the five- minute kneeing penalty to take a commanding 3-0 lead.

Janne Niinimaa and Alexei Yashin scored for the Islanders, who haven't won since November 19 in Florida.

The Isles, 7-6 on home ice, will cap off a five-game homestand Tuesday against Tampa Bay.

Chicago and New York split two meetings last season as the Islanders snapped a 10-game series winless streak (0-8-2) last March.

12/06 11:26:39 ET


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