24 April, 2008
I've come to a realization recently. I have mostly forgiven the Stars organization for stealing the Cup from us. Or, to put it another way, although I still acknowledge that the cup was stolen (Hull's foot was CLEARLY in the crease, and yes, we WOULD have won game 7), I do not hold the current players or coaches responsible. While they are not my first pick to win the Cup, I wouldn't mind it if Dallas won legitimately. I do, however, still blame Brett Hull, and if I never see him do color commentary again I won't be sad at all.
23 April, 2008
So I went to a hockey game tonight. Since I'm currently near Hershey, PA, I went to see the Hershey Bears (AHL affiliate of the Washington Capitals) play the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre Penguins (AHL affiliate of the Pittsburgh Penguins, just in case you couldn't figure the out from their name). The power plays were, well, horrible. A few time the Penguins didn't look like they realized they had one more man that the Bears, and the first few Bears power plays looked like the Penguins had the advantage with how many shots they had. It kind of reminded me of a certain NHL team's power play at the end of the season. (At least it looked like how the Sabres power play sounded. If you don't understand that it's OK. Just remember that I had to listen to Sabres games, when the network was fast enough. Oh the trials and tribulations of being a long-distance fan without NHL Center Ice. I think I'm going to spring for that next year.)''
The Bears were up by one when we hit the 1 minute left in regulation mark, but the Pens had pulled their goalie. The first 10 seconds of the last minute were solid, and the then the Bears must have decided that they had the game wrapped up. Having seen many a Sabres game I knew they they weren't safe yet, and with about 18 seconds to go the Pens tied it up. But 20 seconds into OT the Bears won it.
It was interesting going to a game without rooting for or against either team. I was able to cheer for every goal and just enjoy the game. Yet now I am hoping the Hershey wins the next game so that I can go to another game here. I kind of doubt that this will happen since the bears are down 3-1 in the series.
One more fun thing -- I wore my Sabres t-shirt and hat to the game. As I was walking to the car someone stopped me to say that they liked the Sabres as well. I love who where ever I go when I wear my Sabres gear I can run into someone who's a Sabres fan. This has happened in times Square, Hilton Head, and downtown Scranton, and now in Hershey. Yep, Buffalo is the real hockeytown USA!
Wow, not only did the Flyers/Caps series go to 7 games, but it had to go to overtime! I wish I could have watched some of the series, but instead I was reduced to following it online. But fortunately for me I'm somewhat used to this by now, though I was a bit hampered by not having a game thread to follow. (yeah, I really like blfloblog for that.) I was too tired to follow the Calgary/San Jose series finale, and I was kind of hoping for a Soupy total meltdown leading to a turnover that would cost San Jose the game.
I'd like to take this opportunity to apologize to the entire San Jose organization with the exception of Brian Campbell. I really wouldn't care at all how you did, and depending on how the Eastern Conference shaped up I might have even rooted for you if you make it to the Cup finals if Brian Campbell hadn't knocked Buffalo. But since he did you must all pay the price. Again, I'm sorry, but that's the way it is. If you dump him in the off season then I promise to going back to being completely apathetic about you save when you're playing a team I hate or when you play the Sabres, which is only once every 3 years or so under the current scheduling method
You'd think that living in PA close enough to Philly to have a lot of their fans in the area AND being 15 minutes from the Cap's AHL team that I would be able to watch a game from this series, but no such luck. The post where I'm staying changed their cable in the barracks since last year so the only sports channel I get is ESPN. Not to fear though, I do get to watch some hockey tonight! That's right, I'm going to try and watch the Hershey Bears battle to stay alive against the Scranton-Wilkes Barre Penguins tonight. The Pens are up 3 games to none in the series, and I really don't care who wins, but I will be wearing my Sabres hat and t-shirt to the game! (with the good logo of course -- I am still slug free)
Oh, and according to this tracker thingy I have there were 7 people who visited my site today. I do have readers, wow!
21 April, 2008
So things are shaping up for the conference semi-finals. I'm kind of bummed that I haven't been able to watch any of the games. Perhaps I'll cough up the money for Center Ice next season.
I'm not sure who I want to win the Habs/Bruins series anymore. Out west the only series I feel strongly about is San Jose. I really want to see them lose. I'll be honest about the only reason for this is Brian Campbell's attitude towards the Sabres. I hear he's melting down again during the playoffs showing how inconsistent he can be.
I suppose I'll say a bit about myself just to stretch this out some. In high school I used to love to ride my bike. I would just get up in the mornings and ride during the summer. I would ride around and get some ice cream while I was out, just having a bit of fun. This week I've read on some blogs about summer in Buffalo -- things like Mississippi Mudd's across from Niawanda Park and the numerous festivals in Buffalo. (there's pretty much a different festival every weekend in WNY during the summer) Combined with the very nice weather we've been having I really can't wait for the summer.
Well, that's about all I have right now.
17 April, 2008
Oh, Ottawa, you crack me up. You went from "Look at us we're so great" to a mid-season implosion yet you just barely made the play-offs, then you go on to get swept off the stage.
Special thanks to Pittsburgh for making my day.
(So this entry would have come sooner, but I don't have internet at my temporary abode right now. I hope this is remedied soon, but it's really outside of my control.)
14 April, 2008
Ok, so first off, Sean Avery is an idiot. Gary Roberts even said so. I'm sorry, but waving your hands to taunt another player, let alone Martin Brodeur, a very talented and classy (at least in my mind, even if I do hate it when the Sabres can't score against him) goalie, got old when I was about 9 years old. Heather linked to a video of the idiot on YouTube. No adult should have to have a rule made for doing this, especially at the professional level. And of course Chris Neal has no problem with Avery.
Next, congratulations to Boston College and Nathan Gerbe on winning the NCAA Frozen Four. Rumor has it that The Hobbit will forgo his senior year for a contract, following fellow Sabres' prospect Chris Butler, who signed this past weekend. WGR speculates that The Hobbit will be able to get the league max for a rookie.
I must give major props, yo, (or whatever) to Flyers defenseman Patrick Thoresen. Talk about taking one for the team, he went to block a shot and blocked it with his groin, denting his cup. Although the doctors were worried about damage, well, down there, nothing was ruptured. Let me know when Brian Campbell does something like that. (Although if he did block a shot and say he'd do it again I'd think that maybe he should be paid Bucky's 5/25 mantra).
Also, congratulations to Marty Biron and his wife on the birth of their 3rd kid, a girl. Details at the bottom of that last link.
Oh, for the record I think I'd like to see Montreal vs. Pittsburgh in the ECF this year, with maybe Pittsburgh going on. I'm pretty ambivalent (I hope that's the right word) towards both teams, but I really respect them. On a [slightly] related note (at least it's related in my thought process), I find that one or two players can ruin a team that I might otherwise respect. This is why I can't stand the Rangers.
That's all for now,
12 April, 2008
So, you thought that all Sabres hockey is over 'til next season. (or at least 'til the world tournament. Oh, and all you crazy Canadians need to chill out about Pomminville. Just because he chose not to play for you doesn't mean he doesn't love you.) "The Sabres are out of the play offs" you say. And yes, that is true. "So are the Ameriks, thus ending our long affiliation with their organization." Again, also true. (On an unrelated note, I'm still wondering who our new affiliate will be.) "The Sabres and all their prospects are done 'til next season," you say. NOT TRUE!
Boston College and Notre Dame are duking it out as we speak to earn the honor of being the NCAA Men's hockey champions. And Boston College has not one, but TWO Sabres prospects playing for them! Nathan Gerber had a hat trick for Boston in the semi-finals, and the other Sabres prospect, Andrew Orpik had the opening goal. So if you have cable the turn on ESPN and enjoy for one last night! After that enjoy the play-offs. (On a side note the Pens had their way with the Sens last night, hahaha!)
09 April, 2008
So I stumbled across a group on facebook called "If Chuck Norris was a hockey team then he'd be the Buffalo Sabres." If anyone reads this and has facebook then you can check it out here.
Perhaps I'll have something more meaningful to say soon, like my picks for the playoffs.
04 April, 2008
will an American NHL team be the headline story for missing the play-offs. Say what you will, Buffalo is still hockeytown. I logged onto WBEN.com today only to find that their top story is about the Sabres. For someone who now lives where people don't care about hockey it made me smile.
EDIT: I'm now listening to Tom Baurle talk about the Sabres, making fun of Peters, calling out Vanek, and talking about the Sabres' fundamental problems, and saying which player have been doing well (Gaustad, Mair, Roysie). Let me know when a Detroit talk radio host on a news station talks about the Red Wings for half his show.
03 April, 2008
The rice has been thrown, the wheat has been passed, and the fat lady has sung on the 2007-2008 Sabres. Our play-off hopes bought the farm and went to the big play-off slot in the sky. They kicked the bucket.
I think you get the idea. Let's have a moment of silence then start preparing for our 2008-2009 Stanley Cup run! Lets go, Buffalo!
(and yes, I will be wearing my Sabres t-shirt and hat tomorrow.)
Ok, so I haven't completely given up on the Sabres making the playoffs. Deep down I really want them to make it, but at the same time I'm trying to be rational and protect my (not so) fragile mental state. After last night's Flyers defeat I am once again filled with (hopefully not futile) hope.
02 April, 2008
Could someone please explain to me how I got on a the Carolina Hurricanes e-mail list? I went to ONE game down there, and it was an awesome game (though it would have been better if the Sabres had won), but it was an ECF game (game 5, 2006). So why is it that almost 2 years later I randomly get 2 e-mails in a week's time about how the 'Canes are doing?
01 April, 2008
At least we didn't lose. I'm going to do as many other Sabres bloggers have done over the past week or two and explain my feelings on the season. We've had an up and down season, from high scoring games to pathetic losses. "Inconsistent" is how the season can best be summed up. But at the same time we have seen the emergence of you very talented young players. The Kaleta! has had a great year, as well as the defense "kids." Sure they have a ways to go, but they've done really well, even getting good playing time and, perhaps best of all, bumped Peters off the roster.
Earlier this season (I think it was the end of February) WGR had a web poll on the Sabres greatest problem -- offense, defense, or goaltending. At the time I said it was defense, but that seems to have been partly solved. We still need to cut some dead weight (*coughkotalikcoughcough*), but we have some great talent in the pipe. Signing Pratt at the end of October helped beef them up for this season. Now I'd say their greatest need is for a backup goalie. Miller has done a great job for the number of games he's played, but he's obviously worn out. I don't blame Lindy for not putting T-Bo in. I don't think anyone will be shocked to learn the Sabres traded him or put him on waivers this off-season. It's not really the management's fault on that one. No one could have known that Ty Conklin would have a career-reviving season.
Although I'm disappointed that the sabres missed the playoffs (ok, so mathematically there's still a chance, but I'm not keeping my hopes up at all), but I have to say, I'm ok with it. I really am. First off, I think they need time to focus on re-building. I plan on seeing them in the play-offs next year. Secondly, I hate dynasty teams. That may be the biggest reason why I hate the Yankees. No team "deserves" to make the playoffs. (See "2007 NY Mets.") It's OK to have a bad year. It makes victory years even better. No team should fire their coach (or at least say they will fire their coach) just for missing the championships. Lindy has seen his ups and downs as the Sabres coach, but he knows both how and when to push his players. I think missing the playoffs will be good for the fans. I know someone might read this (if I have more than one reader) who will say "No it's not. Missing the playoffs just alienates fans. They just get our hopes up and then crush them. Woe to us for we are Buffalo sports fans." But hear me out. Next year when the pre-season predictions come out and people write the Sabres off, the faithful will have more to celebrate. Perhaps Vanek will lose some of the pressure he feels to perform. The fans can appreciate the growth of our young players more. I'd try and say this more eloquently, but it's late.
At any rate just because the Sabres will (almost definitely) miss the play-offs this year doesn't mean it's the end of the world. Plus we beat the Leafs tonight, so hurray.
Well, tonight we play the team that can't even come up with a grammatically correct name. That's right we play one of the teams I dislike the most, the Toronto Maple Leafs. Could someone please explain to my when they are not called the Maple Leaves? I know its not a Canadian thing, as my Canadian friends (some of whom are soon to be US citizens) use the correct word for the plural of "Leafs." Toronto is the one team that is always on my "If we have to lose, please, please, please don't let it be to them" list.
EDIT: I did something wrong and this didn't post earlier like it was supposed to. I'm still getting used to this format.