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Briere receives two-game suspension

Daniel Briere received two games instead of two minutes for high-sticking future Hall of Famer Brian Leetch.
The NHL handed Briere a two-game suspension Thursday for high-sticking Leetch midway through the second period of Wednesday's game against Boston. The Buffalo Sabres' co-captain missed Thursday night's game versus New Jersey and will sit out Saturday's contest in Toronto.

"To be honest, I'm a little suprised with two games for something that's solely accidental. I looked at the replay and I know it was accidental," Briere said.

"The only problem with two games is that I look at a play like Brooks Orpik on Erik Cole. The guy deliberately hits him from behind and breaks his neck and he only gets three games."

Briere was not penalized on the play, but Leetch was. The Bruins defenseman was going to the bench when he hooked Briere. As the Sabre fell to the ice, his stick swung and struck Leetch, who was knocked woozy and did not return.

The Sabres and the NHL went over the video Thursday, and the league announced the suspension. It is without pay and will cost Briere $19,775.52, which will be donated to the Players' Emergency Assistance Fund.

"I know [Tampa Bay's Vincent] Lecavalier got one game for a similar incident; we got two," Sabres coach Lindy Ruff said. It's unfortunate, but we have to live with it and move on."

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With Briere out and Jochen Hecht nursing a sore right medial collateral ligament, left wing Taylor Pyatt was reinserted to the lineup after being scratched for the Boston game.

Andrew Peters was a healthy scratch. Rory Fitzpatrick replaced defenseman Teppo Numminen, who missed the first day of what figures to be 10 to 14 for his sprained left MCL.

"In Teppo's case, a game off or a day off here or there would have been good for him," Ruff said of the 37-year-old. "I didn't want to see him get hurt, though."

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The Sabres have announced the date and rosters for the second annual Scotty Bowman Showcase, two games featuring Buffalo-area high school players against their Rochester counterparts.

The event will be held April 15 in HSBC Arena, with the juniors starting at 1 p.m. and the seniors facing off at 4 p.m. Buffalo won both last year, and the winning senior team will again be presented the Bowman Cup by the Hall of Fame coach for whom it's named.

The coaches for the games will include former Sabres Danny Gare, Rob Ray, Larry Playfair and Ric Seiling. Admission and parking are free, but tickets will be needed and are available at and area Dunkin' Donuts.

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The Sabres will host a free seminar titled "Women Understanding Hockey," designed to help women who are new to the sport gain insight. It will be held from 7 to 9 p.m. April 10 in HSBC Arena.

Sabres General Manager Darcy Regier will speak to begin the event, and Gare will join assistant coach Scott Arniel and members of the Buffalo Junior Sabres in on-ice demonstrations. Contact Teresa Belbas at 855-4588 or e-mail:


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