Final

Series (Game 2 of 8)

Series tied 4-4

Game 1: Friday, October 6th
Canadiens4Final
SO
Sabres5
Game 2: Monday, October 23rd
Sabres4Final
Canadiens1
Game 3: Friday, November 24th
Canadiens2Final
OT
Sabres1
Game 4: Saturday, December 9th
Sabres3Final
SO
Canadiens2
Game 5: Tuesday, December 19th
Canadiens5Final
Sabres2
Game 6: Saturday, January 20th
Sabres3Final
Canadiens4
Game 7: Friday, March 2nd
Canadiens5Final
Sabres8
Game 8: Saturday, March 31st
Sabres3Final
Canadiens4

Sabres 4

(9-0-0, 18 pts)

Canadiens 1

(4-2-2, 10 pts)

Coverage: NBCSN

7:00 PM ET, October 23, 2006

Bell Centre, Montreal, Quebec, Canada

1 2 3 T
BUF 1 2 14
MTL 0 0 11

C. Drury (Sabres - LW): Goals: 1, Assists: 1

R. Miller (Sabres - G): Saves: 26, Save Pct.: .963

H. Tallinder (Sabres - D): Goals: 0, Assists: 0

Sabres off to best start in history after win over Habs

MONTREAL (AP) -- The Buffalo Sabres are doing a great job of handling the attention that comes with their record-setting start.

Largest Goal Differential in '06
Team
Goals for
Goals against
Differential
Sabres
46
23
+23
Thrashers
34
19
+15
Stars
29
15
+14
Wild
26
14
+12
All four teams are off to the best start in their franchise's history (Sabres 9-0-0, Thrashers 7-1-1, Stars 8-1-0, Wild 7-1-0).

Chris Drury scored his 10th goal and Buffalo set a new team record by extending its season-opening winning streak to nine games with a 4-1 win over the Montreal Canadiens on Monday night.

The Sabres moved to within one victory of tying Toronto's league record of 10 straight wins at the start of the 1993-94 season. Buffalo matched its previous record of eight, set in 1975-76, with a 6-2 win in Boston on Saturday.

"It doesn't have a lot to do with me," Sabres coach Lindy Ruff said. "Those guys in the room are responsible for each other and keeping their feet on the ground. They're hearing a lot of accolades and how well they're playing and you wonder how they're going to react, and I think it really falls on their shoulders and they've done a really good job with it."

Ryan Miller made 26 saves, losing a bid for his first shutout of the season on Mike Johnson's goal 9:06 into the third.

"We're trying to have fun, that's the main thing," Miller said. "It's early in the season and we know from last year how much things can change. We had a decent start and then we had to really put together a good stretch to build our game and be a playoff team. I'll put a dollar on it right now that we don't win 82 games."

Drury, who had two points to tie Maxim Afinogenov for the team lead with 14, assisted on Jiri Novotny's goal midway through the first before scoring his seventh goal in five games midway through the second, an unassisted short-handed effort that put Buffalo up 2-0.

Elias Says
Chris Drury
Drury
Chris Drury scored his 10th goal in the Sabres' ninth game on Monday. He's only the second player in Buffalo history to reach 10 goals before the team played 10 games. Rick Martin hit double figures in the team's ninth game in the 1972-1973 season.

• For more Elias Says, click here

Jason Pominville scored for the third straight game moments later, deflecting Daniel Briere's shot past Cristobal Huet to increase the Sabres' lead to three. Thomas Vanek extended his goals streak to four games when he scored into an empty net after stepping out of the penalty box with 19 seconds left in the third.

"I think we're a pretty well-grounded group," Pominville said. "We work hard every night, and usually when you work hard you give yourself a chance to win."

Montreal, which blew a two-goal lead in Buffalo on Oct. 6 before losing 5-4 in a shootout, lost in regulation for just the second time in eight games (4-2-2).

Huet stopped 22 shots for the Canadiens and his record fell to 1-1-2.

With Montreal controlling play early, Huet missed a long wrist shot by Novotny 9:42 into the first on Buffalo's second shot of the period. Novotny put a shot on net from just over the blue line that struck Huet's glove. The Canadiens' goalie remained in his butterfly stance as the puck popped into the air and dropped behind him into the net.

"I felt that it wasn't in front of me, but I really don't know," Huet said. "I tried to control the puck but it went behind me."

Drury added to the Sabres' lead midway in the second when he stripped the puck off Canadiens defenseman Andrei Markov in front of Montreal's blue line and raced down the left side, beating Huet with a wrist shot to the top right corner from well within the left faceoff circle.

"That's a rough one to take, especially to make it 2-0," Canadiens left wing Chris Higgins said. "That was a big goal for them. It was a mistake at the blue line and more often than not, with those players up front, it's going to end up in a goal, and it did."

Briere extended his points streak to eight games on Pominville's goal 2:02 later. The Sabres co-captain came out from behind the net and turned before shooting from the slot, collecting his 12th point of the season as Pominville redirected the puck past Huet to put Buffalo up by three.

Game notes


Miller, who improved to 7-0, has three shutouts in 73 regular-season games. He had one shutout in 18 playoff games last spring. ... Canadiens C Radek Bonk played after missing Montreal's last two practices because of back spasms. ... Montreal recalled F Maxim Lapierre from Hamilton of the AHL earlier in the day though he did not dress for the game.

Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press

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