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newjerseydevils.com – The Devils continue their four-game homestand looking to make it two wins in a row when they host the Buffalo Sabres tonight at Prudential Center. (7 p.m., VERSUS, WFAN 660 AM).
For the first time since Jan. 5, Martin Brodeur will not get the start in goal for New Jersey. The Devils' netminder is sidelined with a bruised elbow and will see his streak of consecutive regular-season starts end at 51 games.
One month into the season, New Jersey (6-2-2) has already dealt with a variety of injuries. Forwards Brian Rolston (ankle) and Bobby Holik (pinky), while defenseman Andy Greene is expected to miss four to six weeks after undergoing surgery on Friday for a broken hand. Pierre-Luc Letourneau-Leblond has been recovering from a nasal fracture.
Brodeur became the latest addition to that list after bruising his elbow during the second period of Saturday's 6-1 rout of Atlanta. The four-time Vezina Trophy winner was set to undergo an X-ray and an MRI on Sunday.
Brodeur hasn't been forced out of action since 2005-06, when he missed six games due to a sprained knee.
"You don't want to see anybody go down," Devils captain Jamie Langenbrunner said of Brodeur, who has 544 career wins – seven shy of Patrick Roy's all-time record. "Obviously, he's pretty important for us. We all hope it's not anything too serious."
Veteran Kevin Weekes replaced Brodeur on Saturday and stopped 14 of 15 shots in his first appearance of 2008-09 to help the Devils halt a season-high three-game skid. Zach Parise scored two goals, giving him seven goals and four assists during a six-game point streak.
Weekes, who went 2-2-1 with a 2.97 GAA in nine games last season, is 5-10-2 with a 3.37 GAA in 19 career starts against Buffalo.
New Jersey has called up Scott Clemmensen from Lowell (AHL) to back-up Weekes. Clemmensen, 31, is 4-3-1 in eight appearances this season with a 3.46 GAA and a .895 save percentage.
Goaltender Jeff Frazee, the team's second choice in 2005, was called up Sunday from Trenton (ECHL) and sent to Lowell.
New Jersey has also called up defenseman Anssi Salmela from Lowell. Salmela signed as a free agent during the offseason and made the team out of training camp. He made three appearances with New Jersey before being assigned to the Devils' AHL affiliate on Oct. 17. Salmela, 24, recorded two assists in seven games with Lowell.
Buffalo (7-2-2) last played on Saturday, thumping Washington 5-0 at HSBC Arena.
Thomas Vanek's league-leading 10th and 11th goals backed Ryan Miller, who made 29 saves for his eighth career shutout.
Miller leads the NHL with a 1.82 GAA, but struggled in the past versus New Jersey, going 3-6-3 with a 2.52 GAA in 12 career matchups.
Vanek owns a team-high 14 points, but has been held to a goal and an assist in 12 games against the Devils.
All four meetings between New Jersey and Buffalo last season went to shootouts, with the Devils winning three of them.
with wire services
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