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Surging Rangers seek another win over Sabres

by Dave Lozo

RANGERS (13-9-2) at SABRES (9-14-3)


Last 10: New York 5-4-1; Buffalo 3-5-2

Season series: This is the second of three meetings. The Rangers rallied for a 3-2 shootout win at home on March 3.

Big story: The spark that ignited the Rangers' comeback that night was a major penalty assessed to Sabres forward Patrick Kaleta for checking Brad Richards from behind. The Rangers scored on the ensuing 5-on-3 and again during the major to take the lead in a game that looked to be getting away from them. Kaleta was given a five-game suspension for the hit and Richards missed two games with an injury. Don't expect any type of retribution in this one, as Kaleta is still serving his suspension.

Team Scope:

Rangers: With their 4-1 victory Sunday afternoon in Washington, the Rangers have won five of six to climb into the top eight of the Eastern Conference. Brian Boyle, a healthy scratch Friday against Ottawa, scored the game winner and backup goaltender Martin Biron was sharp after allowing a weak goal to start the game.

"We held them to 11 scoring chances -- that includes the 5-on-3 -- but grinded and did our job on the walls," coach Tortorella said. "I think we're beginning to sort ourselves out as far as how we have to play and doing it a little more consistently."

Sabres: Trying to dig themselves out of an early-season hole, they had a chance to gain ground on the Flyers on Sunday night. They didn't allow a 5-on-5 goal in the contest, but they gave up two power-play goals and a shorthanded goal in a 3-2 loss.

"I don't think we hurt ourselves 5-on-5," captain Jason Pominville said. "We gave up a shorthanded goal and we gave up two or three power-play goals. I think our special teams put us in trouble. Our 5-on-5 play obviously wasn't where we wanted it to be, but it didn't get us in trouble. It was more our special teams."

Who's hot: Rick Nash had his five-game goal streak snapped Sunday, but his two assists extended his points streak to 10 games. … Buffalo's Steve Ott is averaging a point per game in his last six games.

Injury report: The Rangers' lone lingering injury is forward Arron Asham (back). … Sabres defenseman Jordan Leopold (hand) has missed the past eight games.

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