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by Brian Wheeler / Buffalo Sabres
Beyond the Boards is written by the Buffalo Sabres Website Manager, Brian Wheeler. Joining the Sabres prior to the 2003-04 season, Wheeler is the main contact and content editor for He has worked in the NHL, NFL, AHL and NLL over the past 11 years.  Click here to send him an email.

Martin Biron tussled with Ottawa netminder Ray Emery last season as a member of the Sabres. (photo: Bill Wippert)
Dec 21, 2007, 11:47 AM EST

The good-natured verbal jousting began this morning before the clock had even struck 11 a.m.

Danny Briere and Martin Biron were in HSBC Arena for Philadelphia's morning skate and it wasn't exactly a secret.  The two will face their former team for the first time tonight at 7:30 p.m.

Not so much with Briere - as he's the quiet one of the two - but Biron was holding court in the hallway outside the visiting team's locker room.  It was all in good fun as Marty yelled to each Sabres player as they went on the ice for the team's morning warm-up.

The best exchange came when Biron went to the visitor's bench area to see what was happening.

Biron: "Hey, Goose.  I see that shot.  High-blocker.  I'll be ready for that."

Paul Gaustad [Laughing]:  "I'm going to go five-hole on the next one."

Biron: "Yeh? ... you're not good enough to do that."

[Both start laughing]

It's sometimes an interesting situation at morning skates.  Although each player is ultra-competitive by nature, that killer instinct isn't always turned on. But it is always lurking just under the surface.

The mornings can turn into the social time for buddies around the NHL to pop their heads out of the their respective locker rooms to say a quick hello before they do battle.

"For myself, I saw Danny and Marty last night for a little bit," said current Sabres captain and Biron's former locker room sparing mate, Brian Campbell.  "So I saw them then and caught up a little bit."

While it's great to get reacquainted and joke with old friends, make no mistake, there isn't a single player who forgets the task at hand.

"The good thing is you know some of their tendencies, especially with Danny," said Campbell.  "You'll play them tough.  We need these games.  That's what we're thinking about right now. 

"It's not about facing off against them."
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