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Sabres at Maple Leafs: Five Things to Know

TORONTO – For one final time – No. 4 in less than a month if you're Rasmus Ristolainen and Nazem Kadri counting them – it's the Sabres vs. Maple Leafs. The season series wraps up at 7 p.m. in Air Canada Centre.

Here are Five Things to Know:

1. The season series

The Sabres are 2-1 against Toronto this year and have won two straight meetings here, one last season and one last Monday. A win tonight would give them three straight on the road vs. Toronto for the first time since they won eight in a row from Feb. 21, 2008, to Dec. 21, 2009.

The Sabres are 8-3-1 in their last 12 road games. The Leafs are 27-10-2 at home.

2. In the nets

It's a battle of backups as Buffalo's Chad Johnson (10-13-3, 3.35/.896) meets Toronto's Curtis McElhinney, who has been the league's best No. 2 man at 10-5-1, 2.15/.933.

Johnson has been lights-out against the Leafs in his career – going 7-1-1, 2.10/.934 and beating them twice this season. He made 39 saves here last Monday in a 3-2 Sabres victory.

"I try to play the same way against every team," Johnson said. "But being in the Original Six, I have a lot of respect for the organization that's over there and the people that are in it. ... There's so many factors that go into my statistics as a goaltender. I owe it to my teammates in front of me to have those statistics."

McElhinney, 34, has been a godsend to giving Frederik Andersen some nights off in the Toronto goal.

"I think as you get older, you probably understand that every day in the league is a great day," Leafs coach Mike Babcock said today. "If you work real hard and you're a good person, you get to stay longer. And if you work real hard and you're a good person, you probably play better. He seems to have that figured out and has done a heck of a job with us."

3. The lineups

The Sabres called up Matt Tennyson from Rochester as insurance on defense with Victor Antipin out and Nathan Beaulieu ill. The forward lines will be the same as they were Saturday in Nashville, with Jordan Nolan sitting as a healthy scratch.

4. Matthews-Eichel

Jack Eichel (25-37-62 in 63 games) is coming off a five-point game that landed him as the NHL's Third Star of the Week. Auston Matthews (31-26-57 in 59 games) has one point in all six games since returning from a shoulder injury. Always a fun showdown, especially since Eichel has 11 points in eight career games against Toronto.

"We know they're going to be gunning to get us back for last week and we have to be ready to go," Eichel said today.

NHL names Sabres' Eichel as Third Star of the Week

5. By the numbers

The Sabres are 8-4-1 in their last 13 games against the Atlantic Division. ... Sam Reinhart has 34 points (16-18) in his last 34 games. ... The Leafs are plus-27 in 5-on-5 scoring (182-155) – while the Sabres are minus-50 (162-112). Overall, the Sabres are minus-24 in the first period and minus-37 in the second period. ...Toronto's power play is third in the NHL while the Sabres are 23rd in penalty killing.

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