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Ducks try to stay hot against struggling Sabres
(SportsNetwork.com) - The Anaheim Ducks aim for a fourth win in five games when they visit the lowly Buffalo Sabres for Saturday's clash at First Niagara Center.
Anaheim is coming off a shootout loss in Boston, as the Bruins posted a 3-2 victory on Thursday to halt the Ducks' three-game winning streak. The setback dropped Anaheim to 3-2-1 on an eight-game road trip that is set to end Monday against the New York Rangers.
The Ducks, who boast an excellent 10-3-1 record on the season, held leads of 1-0 and 2-1 against Boston on Thursday, but Zdeno Chara sent the game into overtime by scoring a power-play goal for the Bruins with 2:50 left in the third. Jarome Iginla then scored the lone goal of the shootout to secure the extra point for Boston.
Devante Smith-Pelly and Mathieu Perreault lit the lamp for the Ducks, who lost for the first time beyond regulation this season. Boston's Tuukka Rask and Ducks goaltender Jonas Hiller both made 21 stops in the game's first 65 minutes, but the former received some luck to pick up the victory.
"You get your one point, and it's unfortunate we didn't get the second one, but you take this and you build off of it," Ducks forward Corey Perry said.
The loss dropped Anaheim to 5-3-1 as the guest this season.
Anaheim will once again play without forwards Teemu Selanne (oral surgery), Saku Koivu (head) and Jakob Silfverberg (broken right hand). Goaltender Viktor Fasth (lower body) also is currently on the sidelines.
The Sabres are last in the NHL with just two wins and five points through 15 games.
Buffalo lost a 2-0 decision to the New York Rangers on Thursday at Madison Square Garden, dropping the Sabres' record this season to 2-12-1. Henrik Lundqvist posted 29 saves to record the shutout, marking the third time this season that Buffalo has been held without a goal.
Ryan Miller allowed both goals in the setback, Buffalo's third in a row and sixth in its last seven games.
"If we want this to stop, it will stop," Miller said of the team's struggles. "Everyone has to increase their intensity. When everyone wants this to stop, it will. You have to work your way out of it."
In other news for Buffalo, forward John Scott was handed a seven-game suspension on Thursday for his hit on Boston's Loui Eriksson on Oct. 23. Scott has already served four games of the suspension and will be eligible to return on Nov. 8 in Anaheim.
Meanwhile, Sabres forward Patrick Kaleta is eligible to return from a 10-game suspension today. Kaleta was given the ban for a hit to the head against Columbus Blue Jackets defenseman Jack Johnson on Oct. 10.
The Sabres have won three straight in the series against the Ducks, who last played in Buffalo on Dec. 21, 2010. Anaheim lost that meeting by a 5-2 score.
11/02 11:05:02 ET