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Sabres apologize to Buffalo fans for NHL lockout; then issue vow to deliver a winner

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    Former Buffalo Sabres player Andrew Peters, left, and Sabres players chat during an NHL hockey workout in Amherst, N.Y., Tuesday, Jan. 8, 2013. (AP Photo/David Duprey)The Associated Press

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    Buffalo Sabres' Jason Pominville shoots the puck during NHL hockey practice in Amherst, N.Y., Tuesday, Jan. 8, 2013. (AP Photo/David Duprey)The Associated Press

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    Buffalo Sabres' Thomas Vanek shoots the puck during NHL hockey practice in Amherst, N.Y., Tuesday, Jan. 8, 2013. (AP Photo/David Duprey)The Associated Press

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    Buffalo Sabres' Matt Ellis skates onto the ice with a bucket of pucks and water bottles during NHL hockey practice in Amherst, N.Y., Tuesday, Jan. 8, 2013. (AP Photo/David Duprey)The Associated Press

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    Buffalo Sabres' Patrick Kaleta arrives for NHL hockey practice in Amherst, N.Y., Tuesday, Jan. 8, 2013. (AP Photo/David Duprey)The Associated Press

Buffalo Sabres president Ted Black has apologized to the team's fans for having patience to endure the four-month NHL lockout.

With a deal nearly done, Black vowed it's time the Sabres get to work on delivering a winner. He spoke on Tuesday, two days after a tentative agreement was reached on a 10-year deal.

Black will be in New York attending the NHL board of governors meeting Wednesday. That's when owners are expected to approve the new collective bargaining agreement in one of the final steps to prepare for the start of the regular season.

Many Sabres are already in Buffalo, where they've spent the lockout holding regular sessions at a suburban rink. Others, including captain Jason Pominville, are beginning to return after playing in Europe.