Friday, February 22, 2008

7(th) for all Sabrekind

by Anne
Hockey schmockey. WHAT? Ha, totally kidding. Last night's game was stuuuupendous. Remember when, for about 15 minutes before Boston won, we were in 6th place? Now we're in 7th but that's ok, 7th is better than 9th which is better than Toronto which is better than...uhhhh...Tampa.

I've been mulling over last night's BAMF for a while. Millsey had a solid game, minus that messed up poke check to give Toronto their goal, but was it BAMF-worthy? I'd say no. Kotalik had 2 goals, ending a tied for career-high goal-less drought of 14 games. But, was it BAMF? I could watch that saucer pass from Britney to Roysie all night. That was just sexy. I'm glad they showed it as many times as they did and from the angle they did. Pratters totally redeemed himself from his craptastical play against Tampa with a lovely "Sacrifice yourself and go to the ice" block right to the ribs that had to hurt.

I choose to give a co-BAMF to Roysie and Britters. Why? Because they make other players look good. Stafford? Shines when he plays with them. Paille? Same. Connolly? ON FIRE. Now? Kotalik. Ok, Mairsy didn't really come out blazing, but they can't all be winners. In the last month or so whomever gets the nod to skate with those 2 comes out on top. They're solid players who know their roles. Roysie scampers and scraps for the puck, Britters is in front of the net for the screen and the tip-in. That leaves whomever is left to distract and support, and sometimes get set up for goals themselves.

Well done, gents. I'm getting tired of looking for pictures of awards, I can only find so many.

I'm sad they took away Sissy's goal and gave it to Britters. However, he did appear to "tip it in." And I suppose that counts as a "goal." Whatev, all that matters is it counted and we won. 26 goals for #26.

Britters chose to play a little more of a supporting role last night and that looks good on him too, 1 goal and 2 assists ain't too shabby. 2 assists for Sissy as well, wooooooo!

I kind of hate empty net goals. Even when we score them (kind of). Because it almost seems too easy. However, if we were to have the opportunity to score an empty net goal and someone missed (cough Britney like a week ago cough) that's really annoying. So, I feel like they should only count as like 1/2 a goal...but then they'd round up so we'll call it 2 for Kotalik anyway.

Patches played!...for 1:40 and 2 shifts. But, he was playing forward, so we can't have it all. Lindy's clearly been relying more on Roysie, Britters and _______ (Insert name here) in the past few games and not rolling the 4 lines like he usually does. I say, why not? Keep out the lines that are on fire. For a time it was Pommerdoodle, Yoyo and Grizz, then Paille, and they played a lot. Do what works. I'm just glad Patches got some ice time and snagged a +1 on the night.

I love the way the team dynamic ebbs and flows. For a time, like most of January, Danny Pie-YAY was on fire. He still leads the team in +/- with a +12 even after that 9-2 scoring weekend. Now he's having a cooling-off period, but he's still solid. That's a-ok, because now Britney is stepping up. Roysie started the season slow but after his shoulder injury and a tongue-lashing from Lindo he's seriously stepped up his game. Millsey has hot streaks and some rare off nights, but he's consistent. That's something this team has seriously lacked until recent weeks: consistency. Now they seem to be finding their stride. Hopefully its not a fluke and they can ride this hot streak.

While these last 2 games were pretty tank, we have to remember, they were both against the bottom two teams in the Eastern Conference: must wins but still possibly lulling the boys into a false sense of security. Saturday its the Rangers who are, um, decidedly better than Toronto or Tampa. We just can't (and won't) have a repeat of Saturday. I choose to think of last weekend as a necessary knocking off of the high horse that the team needed. Every once in while teams need to be upended and put down a peg. Look at what's happening to Ottawa: they were far and away the leaders in the East for quite some time and now they're grasping at a 1 point lead. Before last night they were in a 3 way tie for 1st. Now, 3 teams are tied for 2nd, all with 75 points. Sabres? 68. Wowza. This will be the most ridiculous photo finish to the playoffs ever.

Speaking of the playoffs: After seeing all the sweet magnetic playoff trackers at the Wilfull Caboose, Interchangeable Parts and The Goose's Roost, I caved and ordered one last night. I'm so excited. Wooooo! Now after a night of hockey all I can think about is re-organizing my playoff tracker that I don't currently own. I'm not sure what I'll do with the teams that have no prayer of a playoff spot, perhaps they'll have an ice cream social off to the side.

I've been reading about Philly's misfortunes and how Danny is now being singled out the way Britney had been, when I read something that summed up 2 things: why I hate Philly and why I love Buffalo:
From NHL.com:

The season keeps getting worse for the Flyers, who started the month as one of the top teams in the Eastern Conference. They lost their ninth straight game (0-8-1) and the home crowd booed a team that dropped out of the conference playoff standings....The Philly faithful have had enough and the Flyers were booed almost the entire game, especially when they were outhustled to the puck.

Let's emphasize:

The season keeps getting worse for the Flyers, who started the month as one of the top teams in the Eastern Conference. They lost their ninth straight game (0-8-1) and the home crowd booed a team that dropped out of the conference playoff standings...The Philly faithful have had enough and the Flyers were booed almost the entire game, especially when they were outhustled to the puck.

Can you imagine booing the Sabres? I seriously can't imagine that EVER happening in HSBC Arena, but maybe I'm naive. Even when the Sabres were in a 10 game losing streak, they didn't get booed in either of the 2 games I attended. It was more of a "I'm very disappointed in you" atmosphere, like when you get caught for drinking at a party in high school and your dad sits you down and tells you what's what. The Philly streak is worse than the Sabres' was, they've only managed 1 point in the last 9 games. At least we pulled out 5 in 10. Fair weather fans much, Philly? Enjoy Danny, when he's good he's great, so I hope he opens up like Britney did for us, but not in time to save your season. This keeps you out of our playoff spot so I'm enjoying it. Woooo.
Update:
Thanks to Amy at Shots off the Crossbar for this picture that continues to prove my point about Buffalo fans. This picture is from last night's Bruins/Panthers game:

You stay classy, Sabres' fans

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Glossary... Sort of

  • "Ryan Miller" Shutout - A 58 minute multi-goal shutout lead that is blown by Miller allowing one meaningless goal
  • Britney or SabreBritney - Thomas Vanek
  • Butter Snaps - Carolina Hurricanes
  • Craigory - Craig Rivet
  • Full Monty - Steve Montador
  • Greener - MATT Greene (LAK)
  • JBG - Jolly Blonde Giant - Tyler Myers
  • Little Foot - Drew Stafford
  • MK - Anne's sister; often leaves nonsensical comments under her Twitter name Mmmkizzle
  • Noodles - Derek Whitmore
  • Oscar - Anne's cat and STH's unofficial mascot
  • Parsley - Jimmy Bonneau
  • Sir Christopher - Chris Butler
  • Sissy - Jaroslav Spacek
  • Telly Monster - Mikael Tellqvist

Because It's Never not Funny


Disclaimer, yo.

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We have nothing to do with the Buffalo Sabres, the National Hockey League or the actual "Sabretooth's House" located in HSBC Arena, we're just borrowing the name. If anyone is offended by anything we've written, get over it, it's a personal blog, not an accredited news source.

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