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NHL Preview from The Sports Network



Friday, November 29th (All times Eastern)

Toronto Maple Leafs (14-9-2) at Buffalo Sabres (5-20-1), 7:30 p.m.

(SportsNetwork.com) - The Buffalo Sabres showed a bit of a spark two weeks ago when they beat the Toronto Maple Leafs in coach Ted Nolan's season debut on the bench.

Things have again gone south in a hurry for the Sabres and their interim bench boss and they try to avoid a sixth straight defeat on Friday night in a home matchup with the Maple Leafs.

Nolan began his second stint as the Sabres coach on Nov. 15 following the dismissal of general manager Darcy Regier and head coach Ron Rolston days earlier.

Buffalo won a 3-1 decision that night in the opener of a home-and-home set with Maple Leafs before getting bested 4-2 the following night in Toronto.

That was the beginning of a current five-game slide for the Sabres, their longest since a 0-5-1 start to the season. They have been outscored 18-6 over this skid, failing to score more than two goals in any of the contests.

Buffalo dropped a 3-1 decision to the Montreal Canadiens on Wednesday, with Ryan Miller allowing three goals on 31 shots faced and Matt Moulson notching the lone goal.

The Sabres held a closed door meeting after the game.

"When things are difficult, it's easy to point fingers, but this group is really starting to pay attention," Nolan said. "We're making strides in the right direction. We want to get better and it showed tonight. The guys had their own little chit-chat in the room and it shows me that they're starting to really care."

Nolan is hoping Moulson's goal gets him going as it marked his first tally since his two-goal debut with the club on Oct. 28 after being acquired from the New York Islanders. He does have seven assists and 10 points in total in 13 games with Buffalo.

The Sabres are likely to debut another new face tonight in forward Matt D'Agostini, who was claimed off waivers from the Pittsburgh Penguins on Wednesday. He had just one assist in eight games with the Pens this season, but did score 21 goals with the St. Louis Blues in 2010-11.

Buffalo, which will visit the New Jersey Devils on Saturday, split starts between Miller and Jhonas Enroth in the home-and-home series two weeks ago.

Miller made 32 saves in the home win, improving to 30-15-1 with four shutouts and a 2.45 goals against average in his career versus the Maple Leafs, while Enroth gave up four goals on 22 shots in the road loss. He fell to 1-1-0 versus the Leafs with a 2.91 GAA.

Toronto tries to avoid a third straight loss tonight and is coming off a disappointing 6-5 shootout setback to Pittsburgh on Wednesday despite the point gained.

The Maple Leafs held leads of 4-1 and 5-3 before yielding a pair of third- period goals to the Penguins. Toronto then came up empty in the shootout, while Pittsburgh scored twice on Jonathan Bernier.

Bernier took the loss despite 43 saves and saw his offense get outshot 19-0 over the third period and overtime.

James van Riemsdyk scored twice and added an assist for the Leafs, who have lost three of four, while Tyler Bozak, Phil Kessel and Nazem Kadri each lit the lamp once.

"It's disappointing that we had a 4-1 lead and that was the result," van Riemsdyk said.

Toronto was without forward Joffrey Lupul, who suffered a strained groin in Monday's loss to the Columbus Blue Jackets.

The Leafs are also set to play on back-to-back nights as they visit the Montreal Canadiens on Saturday. Like the Sabres, both Bernier and James Reimer saw action in the home-and-home set and could split starts again this weekend.

Bernier was in net for the loss in Buffalo, giving up two goals on 26 shots to fall to 0-3-0 with a 3.39 GAA lifetime versus the Sabres.

Reimer is 6-2-1 with a 3.31 GAA in his career versus the Sabres, stopping 33- of-35 shots faced in the home victory.

Buffalo has won five of six and 12 of its last 14 at home versus Toronto.

11/29 10:49:50 ET

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Schedule

Wednesday, April 23Full Scoreboard
Pittsburgh3Final(OT) | Box
Columbus «4Rink Replay
Eastern Conference Quarterfinals, Game Four. Series tied, 2-2.
Anaheim23rd Prd | Box
Dallas2@theRink | TV: CNBC, TSN, RDS2, FSN
Western Conference Quarterfinals, Game Four. Anaheim leads series, 2-1.
St. Louis01st Prd 8:35 | Box
Chicago0@theRink | TV: NBCSN, CBC, FSN-MW, CSN
Western Conference Quarterfinals, Game Four. St. Louis leads series, 2-1.
Full Scoreboard

Standings

2013 - 2014 NHL Eastern Conference Standings
 
Atlantic Division W L OTL Pts GF GA Home Away Div
p-Boston 54 19 9 117 261 177 31-7-3 23-12-6 18-9-3
x-Tampa Bay 46 27 9 101 240 215 25-10-6 21-17-3 19-8-3
x-Montreal 46 28 8 100 215 204 23-13-5 23-15-3 18-8-4
x-Detroit 39 28 15 93 222 230 18-13-10 21-15-5 17-8-5
Ottawa 37 31 14 88 236 265 18-17-6 19-14-8 14-9-7
Toronto 38 36 8 84 231 256 24-16-1 14-20-7 14-13-3
Florida 29 45 8 66 196 268 16-20-5 13-25-3 13-16-1
Buffalo 21 51 10 52 157 248 13-21-7 8-30-3 7-18-5
 
Metropolitan Division W L OTL Pts GF GA Home Away Div
y-Pittsburgh 51 24 7 109 249 207 28-9-4 23-15-3 20-8-2
x-NY Rangers 45 31 6 96 218 193 20-17-4 25-14-2 16-11-3
x-Philadelphia 42 30 10 94 236 235 24-14-3 18-16-7 15-11-4
x-Columbus 43 32 7 93 231 216 22-15-4 21-17-3 16-13-1
Washington 38 30 14 90 235 240 21-13-7 17-17-7 12-15-3
New Jersey 35 29 18 88 197 208 21-11-9 14-18-9 16-9-5
Carolina 36 35 11 83 207 230 18-17-6 18-18-5 15-13-2
NY Islanders 34 37 11 79 225 267 13-19-9 21-18-2 10-16-4
 
x= clinched playoff berth
y= clinched division title
z= clinched overall points title
2013 - 2014 NHL Western Conference Standings
 
Central Division W L OTL Pts GF GA Home Away Div
y-Colorado 52 22 8 112 250 220 26-11-4 26-11-4 19-6-3
x-St. Louis 52 23 7 111 248 191 28-9-4 24-14-3 21-6-2
x-Chicago 46 21 15 107 267 220 27-7-7 19-14-8 13-13-3
x-Minnesota 43 27 12 98 207 206 26-10-5 17-17-7 14-12-3
x-Dallas 40 31 11 91 235 228 23-11-7 17-20-4 13-11-5
Nashville 38 32 12 88 216 242 19-17-5 19-15-7 12-13-4
Winnipeg 37 35 10 84 227 237 18-17-6 19-18-4 9-15-5
 
Pacific Division W L OTL Pts GF GA Home Away Div
z-Anaheim 54 20 8 116 266 209 29-8-4 25-12-4 22-4-3
x-San Jose 51 22 9 111 249 200 29-7-5 22-15-4 18-7-3
x-Los Angeles 46 28 8 100 206 174 23-14-4 23-14-4 16-10-3
Phoenix 37 30 15 89 216 231 22-14-5 15-16-10 14-9-6
Vancouver 36 35 11 83 196 223 20-15-6 16-20-5 12-13-4
Calgary 35 40 7 77 209 241 19-19-3 16-21-4 11-15-3
Edmonton 29 44 9 67 203 270 16-22-3 13-22-6 8-17-4
 
x= clinched playoff berth
y= clinched division title
z= clinched overall points title
  • PGA: Zurich Classic of New Orleans

    Saturday at 3:00 pm on WRAL-TV

  • NASCAR: Toyota Owner's 400 from Richmond

    Saturday at 7:00 pm on FOX50

  • PGA: Zurich Classic of New Orleans

    Sunday at 3:00 pm on WRAL-TV

  • MiLB: Bulls at Charlotte

    Tomorrow at 7:05 pm on 620am

  • MLB: LA Angels at NY Yankees

    Saturday at 1:05 pm on 99.9 The Fan

Scoreboard
Local
Final
CHR 9
DUR 1
 
Final
MIA 101
CHA 97
Final
ATL 3
MIA 1
Final
CHC 5
ARI 7
Final
COL 10
SFG 12
Final
OAK 0
TEX 3
Final
SEA 5
HOU 3
9th
PIT 2
CIN 5
 
9th
CLE 5
KAN 3
 
9th
WAS 1
ANA 4
 
9th
TOR 8
BAL 10
 
Final
DET 4
CWS 6
 
8th
TAM 4
MIN 4
 
8th
BOS 4
NYY 1
 
9th
NYM 3
STL 1
 
7th
MIL 5
SDP 2
 
10:10pm Tonight
LOS
PHI
Final
MIA 101
CHA 97
4th
SAN 75
DAL 88
 
1st
HOU 23
POR 20
 
1st OT
CLB 4
PIT 3
 
2nd Intermission
DAL 2
ANA 2
 
1st
CHI 0
STL 0
 
Final
CHR 9
DUR 1