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Tuesday, December 19th (All times eastern)

Montreal Canadiens (19-8-5) at Buffalo Sabres (24-6-2), 7 p.m.

(Sports Network) - The top two teams in the Northeast Division get together this evening in Buffalo, as the Sabres welcome the Montreal Canadiens to HSBC Arena.

The Sabres lead the division and the Eastern Conference with 50 points and the Habs are seven behind in the Northeast.

Buffalo was handed a rare loss Saturday evening, as it wound up dropping a 3-1 decision to the visiting Senators. Jason Spezza scored twice and added an assist, leading Ottawa to the divisional win.

Jochen Hecht scored and Ryan Miller made 26 saves for the Sabres, who had a three-game winning streak broken.

Tonight marks the end of a three-game homestand for Buffalo, which is 10-3-2 as the host club this season.

Montreal is still in the midst of a winning streak, as it has won three straight contests. The most recent triumph in that stretch came at home Saturday evening against the Pittsburgh Penguins.

Saku Koivu's pair of second-period goals lifted the Canadiens to the 6-3 win at Bell Center. Koivu leads his team in goals (14) and assists (19) this season.

Michael Ryder picked up a goal and two assists, Andrei Markov earned two helpers, and Alex Kovalev notched a goal and one assist for the Canadiens, who have also taken four of their last five. Cristobal Huet stopped 31 shots on the night.

A victory this evening would give Montreal its longest winning streak since posting eight straight victories from March 23-April 6 of last season.

Tonight's matchup is already the fifth meeting of the year between the Sabres and Habs. Buffalo has taken three of the four encounters so far this season, and has won eight of the last 10 tests overall.

12/19 10:24:56 ET


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