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Red Wings shoot for home record against struggling Sabres

10:53 AM, Jan 16, 2012   |    comments
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(Sports Network) - The Detroit Red Wings and Buffalo Sabres couldn't be heading in more opposite directions right now.

The Red Wings close out a three-game homestand this evening looking to set a franchise record with a 15th straight home victory, while the Sabres try to put an end to an eight-game road skid.

Detroit is 17-2-1 at home this season and hasn't lost in Motown since Nov. 3. Its 14-game winning streak as the host ties the club mark first set from Jan. 21-March 25, 1965 at the Olympia.

The Red Wings tied that mark on Saturday with a 3-2 overtime win over the Blackhawks. Todd Bertuzzi scored his second goal of the contest with 39 seconds to go in the extra session, while Jimmy Howard made 25 saves to earn his NHL-leading 26th victory of the season.

Howard survived getting beat for a game-tying goal with only 51.7 seconds left in the third. Detroit kept the pressure off its goaltender by logging all nine shots in overtime.

"We didn't get discouraged by [the game-tying goal] and I really felt we came out hard in overtime," said defenseman Nicklas Lidstrom, who has four goals and 11 points over Detroit's home winning streak.

Detroit has won five of seven overall and is three points behind Chicago for the top spot in the Central Division.

Buffalo, meanwhile, has fallen under .500 (19-20-5) after suffering a 4-2 loss to the hosting Islanders on Saturday for its fourth loss in five games overall. The Sabres have just nine wins in their past 29 games.

Patrick Kaleta and Derek Roy scored in the Sabres' eighth straight loss as the visiting club. They haven't won on the road since Dec. 3 at Nashville to set a franchise record, dropping the opener of a seven-game swing. Jonas Enroth gave up three goals on 38 shots in defeat.

Buffalo head coach Lindy Ruff felt Enroth played well, but wasn't happy with some of the decisions his blueliners made.

"It was a night of some terrible giveaways by a lot of defensemen," Ruff said. "You put guys in the big situation, some guys can succeed and some guys have a tougher time."

Buffalo has been hammered by injuries this year -- it is currently without Christian Ehrhoff, Andrej Sekera and Tyler Ennis -- and lost Robyn Regehr to an upper-body injury versus the Islanders.

The Sabres dropped a 4-1 home loss to the Red Wings on Dec. 2 and have lost three straight and eight of their last 10 overall in this series. Buffalo has lost 10 of its last 11 at Detroit.

The Sports Network

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