Montreal will host Buffalo in a Northeast Division battle before both teams head into the all-star break.

Montreal (26-17-5) won for the first time in four games on Thursday, thanks in large part to netminder Cristobal Huet, who is headed to the NHL All-Star game in Dallas on Wednesday.

Huet was spectacular against the Atlanta Thrashers, stopping 44 shots in the 4-1 victory.

The Canadiens found the back of the net after going scoreless in their previous two games.

Tomas Plekanec and Sheldon Souray, who will join Huet in Dallas, each had one goal and one assist. Alex Kovalev and Sergei Samsonov also scored, while rookie Guillaume Latendresse had two assists.

For Samsonov, who along with Craig Rivet was a healthy scratch in Tuesday's 4-0 loss to the Vancouver Canucks, it marked the first goal in 17 games.

Despite the team's recent struggles, Souray told the Montreal Gazette the players aren't worried.

"You have to be in the room to understand what's going on," he said. "The media portrays what it believes the team feels, but we're still confident. It's not like we're in 16th place."

In fact, Montreal holds a slim lead over Ottawa and Carolina for fifth in the Eastern Conference.

The Canadiens will be facing a Buffalo squad that is playing its seventh game in 11 nights.

Buffalo (33-11-4) countered its first three-game losing streak this season by winning games against Boston and Vancouver this week, though they needed third-period heroics each time.

Sabres forward Chris Drury scored in the final minute of the third period on Friday to tie the score, leading to a 4-3 shootout victory over the Vancouver Canucks.

Jason Pominville had a goal and assist, while Paul Gaustad scored in his first game since sitting out two with a chest injury.

"I thought we played a real strong first period, came unglued in the second period and took a couple penalties out of frustration," Sabres coach Lindy Ruff told the Buffalo News. "But I thought we got our feet back on the ground in the third period and really went to work, and thought the last 10 minutes we really just dominated."

Ryan Miller made 25 saves in regulation. Miller also started in Buffalo's previous two games this week, and is due to see action in the all-star game.

Because of that, Martin Biron will likely be in net against the Canadiens.

With the win against Vancouver, the Sabres moved nine points in front in the conference.

Buffalo has won three of five games against Montreal this season. Three of the meetings between the clubs have necessitated overtime or shootout to decide the outcome.

Daniel Briere and Brian Campbell will join Miller on the Eastern Conference side in Dallas. Thomas Vanek will be part of the Young Stars game on Tuesday.