Devils-Sabres Preview

The Associated Press

The Buffalo Sabres may own the fewest points in the NHL, but they've hardly resembled the league's worst team lately at home.

Ryan Miller has had a hand in that success.

Miller will likely be in net looking to win a sixth straight home game, as the Sabres face the New Jersey Devils on Saturday night.

Buffalo (11-26-4) not only has the worst record in the league, its average of 1.63 goals ranks last - 0.60 behind Minnesota for 29th. The Sabres fell 4-1 at Minnesota on Thursday, losing their 11th straight on the road.

"It's just one of those things where when we're bad, we're bad," interim coach Ted Nolan said.

They've been very good at home, however, going 5-0-1 in their last six home games. They're averaging 2.75 goals to win four straight there for the first time since a five-game streak from Feb. 19-March 12, 2012.

Miller has been superb at home, compiling a 1.34 goals-against average and .962 save percentage while winning his last five games in Buffalo. He last won six straight there from Nov. 13-Dec. 9, 2010.

Miller, named to the U.S. Olympic team earlier this week, may have a chance to equal that run since he's 4-1-1 with a 1.60 GAA and a shutout over his last six home meetings with the Devils (17-17-8).

He enters this matchup coming off a 28-save effort at Minnesota, losing his fifth straight on the road.

"Ryan's been playing really good, and we didn't give him an effort in front of him," captain Steve Ott said.

Matt Moulson also seems to be enjoying himself in Buffalo, scoring six of his seven goals there after the Sabres acquired him in a trade from the New York Islanders on Oct. 27. The left wing had no points and was a minus-6 over the past two games - both on the road.

Buffalo struggled in nearly every facet in a 1-0 overtime loss at New Jersey on Nov. 30, mustering a season-low 15 shots.

The Devils are looking for a much more complete effort after losing 5-3 loss to Chicago on Friday, surrendering four goals in the third period.

"We played well for the first 40, then we hit the pause button," said center Ryan Carter, who returned to the lineup after missing 14 games with a leg injury.

Patrik Elias, though, is expected to miss a second straight game due to general soreness. His 25 points are second on the team to Jaromir Jagr's 34.

Jagr, though, has just one point in five games after totaling 11 during a seven-game point streak.

A trip to Buffalo could get the future Hall of Famer going again. He has 23 goals and 27 assists in 39 career games there, collecting 11 points in his last eight visits dating to 2005.

Cory Schneider will likely get the nod in goal after Martin Brodeur had 19 saves Friday. Schneider earned the shutout against the Sabres, but he lost 4-3 in overtime with Vancouver in his only game at Buffalo on Nov. 15, 2010.

Tyler Myers beat Schneider in the extra session, and provided the Sabres' lone tally Thursday.

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