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12-26-2003, 05:22 AM
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Takeo
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Gameday: Hurricanes at Sabres 12/26

VENUE: HSBC Arena

GAME: Carolina Hurricanes (10-13-8-2) at Buffalo Sabres (12-18-3-1).

TIME: Friday, 8 p.m. EST.

The Buffalo Sabres hope to be turning the corner on their recent slump as they face the Carolina Hurricanes at the HSBC Center. The Sabres avoided an eighth straight loss and breaking a franchise record with a 2-2 tie to the Ottawa Senators on Tuesday. Despite losing a two-goal lead Tuesday, Buffalo persevered for its first point since a 3-2 win in Chicago on Dec. 3.

"We didn't quit," said Sabres forward J.P. Dumont, who scored his team-leading 11th goal. "We got a good effort from everyone. We're going to win some games if we play like that. It was a big point for us."

Rookie Derek Roy, playing just the fourth game of his career, scored his first NHL goal for Buffalo. "We have to tighten our system and tighten up our game," said the 5-foot-9 Roy. "But we worked hard and it's encouraging."

The Sabres snapped a five-game losing streak at home, but still struggled with the man advantage. They went 0-for-4 on the power play and have gone 7-for-88 (8 percent) since Nov. 1.

Buffalo center Chris Drury missed a second straight game with a separated shoulder and is not expected to return for this contest.

Carolina had won back-to-back games for the first time in six weeks before losing 3-1 to the Dallas Stars on Tuesday. Kevin Weekes made 24 saves and Jeff O'Neill scored the lone goal for the Hurricanes, who could not capitalize on the power play for the sixth straight game (0-for-19).

"We just need to keep working on it," said Carolina coach Peter Laviolette. "That's all you can do. There are things I know we can do better on it. We haven't had a whole lot of time to work on it. That's no excuse either. Usually, when you look at hockey games, the team that wins specialty teams, wins the game."


STANDINGS: Hurricanes - 30 points, 4th place, 10 PB, Southeast Division. Sabres - 28 points, 5th place, 21 PB, Northeast Division.

TEAM LEADERS: Hurricanes - Josef Vasicek, 9 goals; O'Neill, 15 assists and 19 points; Jesse Boulerice, 70 PIM. Sabres - Dumont, 11 goals and 25 points; Dumont and Drury, 14 assists; Andrew Peters, 76 PIM.

SPECIAL TEAMS (through Dec. 23): Hurricanes - Power play: 10.8 percent (16 for 148), 28th in NHL. Penalty killing: 84.7 percent (116 for 137), 16th. Sabres - Power play: 12 percent (17 for 142), 27th. Penalty killing: 85 percent (136 for 160), 13th.

GOALTENDERS: Hurricanes - Weekes (10-11-6, 4 SO, 2.02 GAA); Jamie Storr (0-4-2, 0, 3.00). Sabres - Martin Biron (6-8-2, 0, 2.87); Mika Noronen (6-8-1, 2, 2.18).

SEASON SERIES: Sabres, 1-0.

LAST MEETING: Nov. 21; Sabres, 5-0. At Buffalo, the line of Dumont, Daniel Briere and Jochen Hecht combined for three goals and three assists while Noronen made 35 saves for his third career shutout.

ROAD/HOME RECORDS: Hurricanes - 4-9-3-1 on the road; Sabres - 6-8-2-1 at home.

INJURY REPORT: Sabres - C Tim Connolly (concussion syndrome), D Andy Delmore (groin), C Chris Drury (shoulder); Hurricanes - D Bruno Jacques (abdomen)

WHO'S HOT: Sabres - LW Jochen Hecht has a team-leading plus-6 rating and has been a minus only three times this season; Hurricanes - RW Jeff O'Neill has two goals and one assist in his past three games.

FAST FACTS: Sabres - LW Taylor Pyatt has recorded only seven shots on goal over his past 10 games; Hurricanes - Hurricanes have failed to score on 21 straight power plays over six games.

SABRES ROSTER:

Skaters
Player G A PTS +/- PIM

Dumont 11 14 25 -1 16
Briere 10 13 23 -3 38
Drury 5 14 19 -1 28
Pyatt 7 7 14 0 2
Satan 9 5 14 -16 14
Brown 4 8 12 -2 22
Kalinin 4 7 11 -5 17
Kotalik 8 3 11 -9 27
Zhitnik 1 10 11 -11 57
Afinogenov 5 5 10 3 24
Hecht 2 7 9 6 16
Mair 2 7 9 -4 56
Patrick 2 4 6 2 8
Taylor 2 4 6 -4 6
Fitzpatrick 0 3 3 -5 17
Campbell 0 2 2 -5 2
Biron 0 1 1 0 4
Boulton 0 1 1 -1 31
Delmore 0 1 1 -2 23
Roy 1 0 1 -2 0
Tallinder 0 1 1 1 10
Botterill 0 0 0 -1 14
McKee 0 0 0 -3 23
Miller 0 0 0 0 0
Noronen 0 0 0 0 0
Peters 0 0 0 -5 76
Pittis 0 0 0 -1 4

Goalies
Player W-L-T GAA SV%

Biron 6-8-2 2.87 .895
Noronen 6-8-1 2.18 .918
Miller 0-3-0 5.06 .7

HURRICANES ROSTER:

Skaters
Player G A PTS +/- PIM

O'Neill 4 15 19 -4 36
Cole 5 12 17 1 44
Vasicek 9 7 16 -6 26
Staal 7 8 15 1 20
Brind'Amour 3 10 13 -3 12
Vrbata 8 5 13 -4 12
Francis 5 6 11 -9 6
Hedican 1 8 9 3 20
Markov 3 6 9 -1 17
Murray 4 4 8 5 0
Hill 0 7 7 -3 22
Adams 3 3 6 -4 31
Adams 2 2 4 1 19
Wesley 0 4 4 1 4
Bayda 2 1 3 -5 8
Boulerice 2 1 3 -1 70
Wallin 3 0 3 -3 35
Boughner 0 2 2 -3 32
Jacques 0 1 1 -6 6
Ward 0 1 1 -6 19
Rourke 0 0 0 0 0
Storr 0 0 0 0 0
Svoboda 0 0 0 -2 0
Tetarenko 0 0 0 0 0
Weekes 0 0 0 0 4

Goalies
Player W-L-T GAA SV%

Weekes 10-11-6 2.02 .922
Storr 0-4-2 3.00 .878

http://www.sportsline.com/nhl/gamece...031226_CAR@BUF
http://buffalonews.com/editorial/20031226/1035543.asp

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