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Buffalo
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53-22-7
Toronto
Maple Leafs
40-31-11

game recap

Sabres 4, Maple Leafs 3

Wednesday, 08.06.2014 / 4:47 AM

Associated Press

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Sabres 4, Maple Leafs 3
Buffalo Sabres 4, Toronto Maple Leafs 3

TORONTO (AP) -The Buffalo Sabres ended their rare losing skid and regained the top spot in the NHL.

Daniel Briere, Ales Kotalik and Chris Drury had a goal and assist each, and Sabres held on for a 4-3 victory over the Toronto Maple Leafs on Saturday night.

Dmitri Kalinin also scored for the Sabres, who avoided their first three-game losing streak of the season. Buffalo leads the NHL with 63 points, one more than idle Anaheim and 19 ahead of Northeast Division-rival Toronto.

Buffalo has lost consecutive games only twice this season.

"We're not use to losing," Briere said. "Two games for us felt like a long time. Now we'll be able to relax and get back to the same game plan."

Carlo Colaiacovo, Alex Steen and Pavel Kubina scored for the Maple Leafs, who won 10-2 over Boston on Thursday. Toronto is 0-4 this season in games following victories with at least a four-goal margin.

Kubina - who signed a four-year, $20 million contract in the offseason - scored his first goal with Toronto on the power play at 15:28 of the third to cut the Maple Leafs' deficit to 4-3.

The horn to signify a goal went off in the final seconds, but Toronto's John Pohl hit the side of the net despite shooting at a wide-open goal.

"I can't tell you what I said because you wouldn't be able to print it," Buffalo coach Lindy Ruff said. "Somewhere along the lines of holy chaos."

Steen, who had a hat trick on Thursday, trimmed Buffalo's lead to 3-2 with a power-play goal at 12:32 of the second. But Kotalik's wrist shot from the top of the circle made it 4-2 at 18:17.

Fans jeered Toronto goalie Andrew Raycroft when he made his next save. Raycroft replaced Ed Belfour in the offseason as the Leafs' No. 1 goalie and played well at the start of the season. He has struggled lately.

"They are definitely one of the two, three, or four teams skill wise," Raycroft said. "They have four lines that they can roll at you."

Kalinin's one-timer from the top of the circle beat Raycroft at 4:18 of the first. Just 39 seconds later, Drury put a weak wrist shot in traffic past Raycroft.

Colaiacovo's wrist shot cut it to 2-1 at 17:49 of the first, but Briere faked a shot before scoring past a sprawled Raycroft at 3:47 of the second.

Notes: Buffalo's Andrew Peters didn't return after blocking a shot and limping off the ice midway through the first. ... Steen had a career-high, five-point game as the Maple Leafs scored nine unanswered goals in the final two periods of Thursday's victory. ... The teams split the two previous games this season.

scoring summary
1st Period
04:18
BUF
Dmitri Kalinin (3) ASST: Jason Pominville (13), Daniel Briere (33)
1 - 0 BUF
04:57
BUF
Chris Drury (22) ASST: Ales Kotalik (16)
2 - 0 BUF
17:49
TOR
Carlo Colaiacovo (3) ASST: Kris Newbury (2), Matt Stajan (14)
2 - 1 BUF
2nd Period
03:47
BUF
Daniel Briere (16) ASST: Thomas Vanek (22), Maxim Afinogenov (27)
3 - 1 BUF
12:53
TOR
PPG - Alexander Steen (8) ASST: Bryan McCabe (25), Tomas Kaberle (29)
3 - 2 BUF
18:17
BUF
Ales Kotalik (12) ASST: Chris Drury (19), Paul Gaustad (12)
4 - 2 BUF
3rd Period
15:28
TOR
PPG - Pavel Kubina (1) ASST: John Pohl (8), Ian White (16)
4 - 3 BUF
penalty summary
1st Period
12:08
BUF
Maxim Afinogenov  Cross checking against  Bryan McCabe
12:08
TOR
Bryan McCabe  Cross checking against  Maxim Afinogenov
15:21
BUF
Teppo Numminen  Holding against  Jeff O'Neill
2nd Period
00:52
BUF
Toni Lydman  Interference against  Matt Stajan
03:50
BUF
Adam Mair  Fighting (maj) against  Ben Ondrus
03:50
TOR
Ben Ondrus  Fighting (maj) against  Adam Mair
04:35
TOR
Hal Gill  Tripping against  Jochen Hecht
07:06
TOR
Mats Sundin  Hooking against  Toni Lydman
12:18
BUF
Derek Roy  Holding against  Mats Sundin
12:37
BUF
Teppo Numminen  Holding against  Jeff O'Neill
18:43
BUF
Derek Roy  Tripping against  John Pohl
20:00
BUF
Paul Gaustad  Roughing against  Matt Stajan
3rd Period
03:06
BUF
Daniel Briere  Hooking against  Tomas Kaberle
05:54
TOR
Mats Sundin  Slashing against  Derek Roy
10:44
TOR
Kris Newbury  Slashing against  Martin Biron
13:42
BUF
Chris Drury  Holding against  Pavel Kubina
19:02
TOR
Jeff O'Neill  Slashing against  Teppo Numminen
goalie stats
Martin Biron
Martin Biron
SA: 35TOI: 60:00
Saves: 32EV: 22 - 23
PIM: 0PP: 8 - 10
SV%: .914SH: 2 - 2
Andrew Raycroft
SA: 29TOI: 58:15
Saves: 25EV: 19 - 23
PIM: 0PP: 3 - 3
SV%: .862SH: 3 - 3
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