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Preview: Sabres at Senators

Craig Anderson back in goal for Ottawa; Buffalo's top line of Ryan O'Reilly, Kyle Okposo, Matt Moulson looks to stay hot

by Chris Stevenson / Correspondent

SABRES (4-4-2) at SENATORS (7-3-0)

7 p.m. ET; SN360, SN1, MSG-B, NHL.TV


Sabres team scope

After winning three games in a row, the Sabres lost to the Toronto Maple Leafs, 2-1, Thursday despite outshooting their opponent, 43-29. "We're .500 so we're not very satisfied," Sabres goaltender Robin Lehner said. "Small things are starting to come into place. Consistency is what will bring good things to our team. We have things to work on. Closing games out, we tend to have a few moments in a couple of games where we have kind of been giving away the games. It hasn't been taken away from us. It's been given away." The Sabres power play and penalty kill are each ranked 10th in the NHL. Forwards Ryan O'Reilly, Kyle Okposo and Matt Moulson, who make up the Sabres top line, have scored four goals each, accounting for more than half of the Sabres' 23 goals. The Sabres are 3-1-2 on the road.


Senators team scope

Goaltender Craig Anderson will start after missing a 1-0 win against the Vancouver Canucks on Thursday to be with his wife Nicholle, who is battling cancer. "When he's here, he's in," Senators coach Guy Boucher said. "His ability to focus is quite impressive. It's easy to say, but to do? I've seen a lot of players who are good and can focus in normal situations, but once you get to a pressure situation it's a whole different level." Forward Mark Stone will return after missing the game Thursdasy because of a neck injury. Forward Zack Smith, who didn't practice Friday, will play. Defenseman Chris Wideman will miss his second game with an upper-body injury and Fredrik Claesson will play in his place again. The Senators, 5-1-0 at home, have won three games in a row and are playing the last game of a three-game homestead.


Sabres projected lineup

Matt Moulson -- Ryan O'Reilly -- Kyle Okposo

Zemgus Girgensons -- Sam Reinhart -- Tyler Ennis

Marcus Foligno -- Johan Larsson -- Brian Gionta

William Carrier -- Derek Grant -- Nicholas Baptiste

Josh Gorges -- Rasmus Ristolainen

Dmitry Kulikov -- Casey Nelson

Jake McCabe -- Cody Franson

Robin Lehner

Anders Nilsson

Scratched: None.

Injured: Jack Eichel (ankle), Evander Kane (ribs), Nicolas Deslauriers (knee), Hudson Fasching (groin), Zach Bogosian (knee), Cody McCormick.


Senators projected lineup

Mike Hoffman -- Kyle Turris -- Tom Pyatt

Ryan Dzingel -- Derick Brassard -- Bobby Ryan

Zack Smith -- Jean-Gabriel Pageau -- Mark Stone

Matt Puempel -- Chris Kelly -- Chris Neil

Marc Methot -- Erik Karlsson

Dion Phaneuf -- Cody Ceci

Mark Borowiecki -- Fredrik Claesson

Craig Anderson

Mike Condon

Scratched: Max McCormick

Injured: Andrew Hammond (groin), Clarke MacArthur (concussion), Chris Wideman (upper body).


Status report

Lehner will start his fourth game in a row. The former Senators goaltender is 1-0-1 against Ottawa with a .946 save percentage and a 1.57 goals against average. … Claesson will play his second game. He played 10:21 in his season debut Thursday against the Vancouver Canucks.


Who's hot

Larsson has a goal and an assist in his past two games. … Hoffman has two goals in his past three games.

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