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[open thread] Buffalo Sabres vs. NY Rangers

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7 PM  TV: Versus  Radio: WGR550

This couldn't be a bigger game tonight against the New York Rangers.  The Rangers are currently seven points behind the Rangers in the standings and they are four points out of a playoff spot.  The Sabres are coming off of a 4-3 overtime loss to the Carolina Hurricanes on Saturday.  The Sabres were lucky to come away with a point because for two periods they were dominated by the Canes.

The Rangers are coming off of a 1-0 shootout win against the Boston Bruins on Sunday.  The Rangers are 5-5-2 in the second game of back-to-back games this season, however they have not lost one in regulation since January 20 against the Boston Bruins.  The Rangers have not played Buffalo in the second game of back-to-back games but they have played them in the first game twice and winning both times.  The Rangers have beaten Buffalo all three times they have played this season although they are only 21-41-10-1 all time against the Sabres.

Injury Notes:  I believe Steve Bernier will still be out nursing a sore groin but Nathan Paetsch is expected to be in the lineup.

Buffalo Leaders

Goals:Derek Roy,Thomas Vanek 27
Assists:Jason Pominville 41
Points:Jason Pominville 63
Plus/minus:Daniel Paille +12
PIM:Andrew Peters 85

Rangers Leaders

Goals:Chris Drury, Brendan Shanahan 22
Assists:Scott Gomez 51
Points:Scott Gomez 66
Plus/minus:Scott Gomez, Nigel Dawes +10
PIM:Colton Orr 140

Projected Sabres lines

Vanek-Roy-Stafford
Hecht-Connolly-Pominville
Kotalik-Gaustad-Afinogenov
Paille-Mair-Kaleta

Kalinin-Lydman
Spacek-Sekera
Paetsch-Pratt