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NHL Preview from The Sports Network

Saturday, April 3rd (All times eastern)

Buffalo Sabres (37-33-7-4) at Montreal Canadiens (40-30-7-4), 7 p.m.

(Sports Network) - A pair of teams close out their regular seasons tonight when the Montreal Canadiens welcome the Buffalo Sabres to the Bell Centre.

The Canadiens are headed for the playoffs, as they hold the seventh spot in the Eastern Conference. They are one point ahead of the New York Islanders with just one game left for each team.

However, the Sabres' playoff hopes died Friday night after their 2-0 loss to the Toronto Maple Leafs.

Ed Belfour made 17 saves for his ninth shutout of the season to help the Maple Leafs defeat Buffalo, 2-0, at the HSBC Arena.

Chad Kilger scored early in the third period for Toronto, which trails Boston and Ottawa by a single point for the lead in the Northeast Division. The Leafs are in fifth place in the Eastern Conference.

The Sabres were eliminated from playoff contention when the Islanders clinched the final berth in the Eastern Conference with a victory Friday over Carolina.

Meanwhile, the Canadiens were handed a 2-0 setback by Sean Burke and the Philadelphia Flyers on Thursday night at the Bell Centre. Burke made 24 saves to earn his second shutout of the season and lead Philadelphia.

Jose Theodore stopped 21 shots for the Canadiens, who suffered their fifth straight loss (0-4-0-1). During a scoreless first period, the Canadiens dictated play. However, Burke made nine saves in the opening 20 minutes to keep the game deadlocked.

The Sabres are 3-2 against the Habs this season with all three victories coming at home. Buffalo has won 10 of the last 13 meetings overall, but has dropped three of its last four in Montreal.

04/03 10:32:16 ET

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