Sabres, Sens clash in Ottawa

The Buffalo Sabres will try to boost their playoff chances tonight, as they visit the Ottawa Senators for a Northeast Division battle at Scotiabank Place.

The Sabres, who are currently trailing Ottawa by 10 points in the standings, would like to bounce back from Thursday's loss in Boston. That 3-1 setback was just Buffalo's second regulation loss over the last 11 games (7-2-2), but it was also the second time in three outings that the Sabres failed to gain a point.

Buffalo enters today's action two points out of a playoff spot in the East, as it trails Washington and Winnipeg, who are tied for the eighth seed with 72 points. The Senators, meanwhile, are holding onto the seventh seed with 80 points and are also just three behind Boston for the Northeast Division lead.

The Sabres won the first three meetings with the Sens this year, but Ottawa has since recorded consecutive victories and can split the season series with a win tonight. Buffalo has taken eight of 12 overall from the Senators, but has lost six of its last 11 in Canada's capital city.

The Senators have won two straight after a two-game slide and are coming off Thursday's impressive win over the New York Rangers, who are leading the Eastern Conference in points. Ben Bishop made 25 saves and Zack Smith, Nick Foligno, Kyle Turris and Jason Spezza netted goals in the 4-1 home win.

"I thought our team played real good from start to finish," Senators head coach Paul MacLean said. "I thought the physicality of the game was there on both sides and we were able to match it."

The victory improved Ottawa's home record to 18-13-3 this season.

Bishop, who was acquired in a trade with St. Louis last month, has started the last two games for the Senators and won both outings. With regular No. 1 goaltender Craig Anderson still sidelined with a lacerated finger, Bishop will likely get another start tonight.

Buffalo was tied 1-1 with the Bruins after 40 minutes of play on Thursday, but Johnny Boychuk and David Krejci scored within three minutes of each other in the third period to lift Boston to the 3-1 victory.

Jason Pominville scored for the Sabres, while Jhonas Enroth gave up three goals on 28 shots. Enroth was making his first start since Feb. 16, but Ryan Miller is expected to be back between the pipes tonight.

Buffalo has lost its last two games on the road and is 14-18-1 as the guest this season.