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Sabres 3, Oilers 1

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EDMONTON, Alberta (AP) - Tim Connolly was so happy with his goal, he was quite excited to go watch it on replay.

Maxim Afinogenov had a goal and assist in the third period to lead the Buffalo Sabres past the Edmonton Oilers 3-1 on Monday night.

Connolly added a power-play goal, and Derek Roy also scored for Buffalo, which has won two straight games but remains four points behind first-place Ottawa in the Northeast Division.

"We're in Canada, so I might get to see it on TV," Connolly said of his goal. "We get a clutch goal when we need it, and that's what happened."

Teppo Numminen finished with two assists as the Sabres opened a six-game road swing. Buffalo closed out a six-game homestand with a 10-1 win over Los Angeles on Saturday.

"Everybody was waiting to see how we would react after the big win at home," Numminen said. "This was huge for us."

Ales Hemsky scored for Edmonton, which has lost three in a row against Eastern Conference teams.

The Sabres scored on two of four third-period shots to earn their first win in Edmonton since a 1-0 victory on March 27, 1998.

"We took ourselves out of the game for two periods, then couldn't get it going in the third period," Oilers coach Craig MacTavish said. "A lot of it was a product of playing a good team."

Edmonton gave Buffalo 11 power plays.

"It's tough when you're killing penalties all night," Oilers captain Jason Smith said. "We're not getting the results we want."

Buffalo's Ryan Miller stopped the Oilers on three third-period power plays and turned aside 22 shots for his 13th win.

"Miller made the key saves when we needed him," Sabres coach Lindy Ruff said. "That's all you can ask of him."

The Oilers went 3-3-4 this season against teams from the East. Buffalo is 6-1-1 versus the West.

Hemsky was laid out following an open-ice hit in the first period by Sabres defenseman Jay McKee, who appeared to stick his knee out on the play. That resulted in a swift response from Smith, who was assessed 17 minutes in penalties.

"It's a team thing to do," Oilers center Marty Reasoner said.

Rookie Edmonton defenseman Matt Greene had a hard hit on Sabres center Jiri Novotny in the second, then wrestled with Andrew Peters to take a double minor for roughing. Oilers center Jarret Stoll ended the second taking a double minor for high-sticking after clipping Connolly in the face.

Notes: The Oilers moved C J.J. Hunter off injured reserve and assigned him to the AHL Hamilton Bulldogs. ... Oilers enforcer Georges Laraque was a healthy scratch after playing in 27 straight games. ... Stoll's second-period, power-play shot knocked off Miller's mask.

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