Buffalo, which is looking for its first nine-game winning streak in more than 22 years, trails Ottawa by one point for the division lead.
Ottawa, 8-1-1 in its last 10 games, is two points behind Carolina for the league lead.
After this contest, the Sabres and Senators will meet three more times over their final 17 games.
The Sabres had their franchise record-tying streak of four straight games with at least six goals end with Thursday’s 3-1 home win over Toronto. The last time they had scored six goals in four straight games was 1982.
“That’s more our game,” Sabres center Chris Drury said of the Toronto win. “We were able to play our style. But we’ll take them anyway we can get them right now.”
Center Daniel Briere’s drew an assist in the win. He has five goals and 12 assists in nine games after missing 24 with a sports hernia.
The Sabres, who last won eight straight during the 1998 postseason, have not made the playoffs since losing in the 2001 Eastern Conference semifinals.
“There’s no quit in this team,” Sabres coach Lindy Ruff said. “You can’t get much hotter.”
Ottawa is coming off a 3-2 shootout loss Thursday to Boston. Rookie goaltender Ray Emery, who has started the last nine games while Dominik Hasek recovers from a groin injury, allowed the lone shootout goal to Patrice Bergeron in the loss.
“It was good to see us come back and keep playing hard,” Vermette said. “In the playoffs, you won’t take the lead every time.”
The Sabres’ 21 road wins lead the Eastern Conference, but they have been outscored 18-2 in three straight losses in Scotiabank Place.
Ottawa’s 24 home wins rank second among Eastern Conference teams.
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