Saturday’s Montreal Coverage

Buffalo (50-20-7) at Montreal (40-32-6) (AP)

Sabres look to clinch Northeast Divison title (Sportsticker)

Buffalo Sabres (50-20-7) at Montreal Canadiens (40-32-6) (The Sports Network)

Game # 78: Buffalo @ Montreal (SabresFans.com)

Satan didn’t deserve boos, Ray’s cheap shot

‘Miroslav Satan was booed every time he touched the puck on Friday night, joining a not-so-exclusive club that counts Darcy Tucker, Dominik Hasek, Chris Neil and Alex Ovechkin as current members, Phil Esposito as a lifetime member, and Doug Gilmour as a very special member.’

Catching up with . . . Larry Carriere

'"We didn't win, obviously, but there still was a tremendous sense that we accomplished something," Carriere said. "We had a character team, everybody on that team loved to play the game."'

Sabres are a win from division title

‘“It would be nice to bring home the President’s Trophy,” Sabres defenseman Jaroslav Spacek said. “Nobody wants to talk about it, but it gives you home-ice advantage for every series.”‘

Briere is great, but Drury may be indispensable

‘Drury taught this team how to win. In his case, it’s always been more a disdain for losing. It’s hard to imagine him leaving the situation he has in Buffalo for a lesser one elsewhere, especially if the Sabres offer him a contract in line with his value. The Sabres would likely need to give him between $6 million and $7 million per season, about what he would get on the open market.’

Team beefs up short game in first period

‘It was the second time this season the Sabres scored twice while short-handed, but it was the first time they did it with a goalie in the net. Drury and Jason Pominville scored empty-netters against Toronto on Nov. 22. The Sabres’ record is three, accomplished March 19, 1998, when Alexei Zhitnik scored twice and Michael Peca added another.’

Head hits plague hockey

‘“I really believe the culture is ready for a change,” he said. “I think everybody realizes how dastardly head injuries can be. They can be career-ending, and we cannot afford to lose skilled players in that fashion.”’

Sabres find variety of ways to beat Islanders

‘”I think it was an all-around good night,” Roy said about the penalty killers. “We generated more chances than we normally do and we worked really hard. I think we just out worked them. We had four on five and we were battling for pucks. You really have to bear down when you get chances on the penalty kill because you don’t get many.”‘

Saturday’s New York Coverage

Injuries frustrate Islanders’ Campoli in 2nd season (Erie Times News)

20 minutes of doom (Newsday)

Photo gallery (Newsday)

Five Sabres goals in the first put Isles away (NewYorkIslanders.com)

Buffalo 6, NY Islanders 4

‘”The first period was obviously our best, and then we got pretty sloppy after that,” Drury said. “But at the end of the day, it’s still a `W,’ and it’s better than getting on the plane with a loss. … Sometimes you win ugly.”‘

Buffalo 6, NY Islanders 4

‘Buffalo has already clinched a playoff spot, but coupled with an Ottawa win Friday night, could not clinch the division. The Sabres will get that opportunity on Saturday when they battle Montreal, with a chance to take the division and the Eastern Conference with a win (needing 109 points).’

Five Goal First Lifts Sabres To 6-4 Win Over Isles

‘After no scoring in the second, the Islanders came out with some energy in the third scoring two quick power play goals by Viktor Kozlov and Tom Poti making it 5-3 with fifteen minutes left in regulation. Dainius Zubrus banged home the puck on the power play to increase the lead to 6-3.’

Buffalo Two Points Away

‘”The first period was obviously our best,” said Drury, who has captained Buffalo to its first back-to-back 50 win seasons in franchise history. “It got pretty sloppy after that. But at the end of the day it’s still a “W” and it’s better than getting on the plane with a loss.”‘

Sabres 6, Islanders 4

‘A pair of shorthanded breakaways, sandwiched around a duo of power play conversions, highlighted Buffalo’s specialty-teams clinic in the opening twenty minutes – an exhibition that quickly proved to be necessary, after coasting in cruise control for the next two periods and giving the Islanders opportunities to make the score respectable.’

Sabres send Islanders to sea with five-goal first period

‘“I think everybody was on the same page,” Roy said. “We came out really strong, and the coach got us ready this week. In practice, we were skating and working on defense, but tonight it seemed like the offense came through.”’