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When, where: Tonight, 7, at TD Banknorth Garden.

TV, radio: NESN, WBZ (1030).

Records: Buffalo is 44-20-1-4 (fourth in the Eastern Conference with 93 points); Boston is 27-31-5-7 (13th in the Eastern Conference with 66 points).

Goals: Ales Kotalik 24, Thomas Vanek 24, Chris Drury 22.

Assists: Maxim Afinogenov 36, Teppo Numminen 36, Tim Connolly 33.

Goaltending: Ryan Miller (25-11-2, 2.52 GAA), Martin Biron (18-7-3, 2.94).

Head to head: This is the seventh of eight meetings this season. Buffalo has won the previous six.

Miscellany: Sabres coach Lindy Ruff returned to the bench for Wednesday's 4-3 loss to Carolina. He missed the previous game as his 11-year-old daughter, Madeleine, had surgery to remove a brain tumor . . . The Sabres, 15-5-2 in their last 22 games, are 21-10-2 on the road this season . . . Miller, in his rookie season, is ninth in the NHL in goals-against average.

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