The Buffalo Sabres have to be looking for a little retribution tonight against the Montreal Canadiens. Retribution will come in two forms, first off, they are coming off one of the worst losses of the season, dropping a contest to the doormat New York Islanders. And I am not talking about a close game that the Islanders were lucky to be a part of. I’m talking about a game in which the New York Islanders skated up oneside of the Buffalo Sabres and down the other.
They are also trying to avoid going 0-4 against the Montreal Canadiens. Ask the Buffalo Bills how important winning divisional games is. On second thought, ask the Seattle Seahawks. The Sabres are desperate for points now, as they sit 12 points behind the Montreal Canadiens, and ten points behind the Atlanta Thrashers for the eighth and final playoff spot.
Lets put the first half plus of the season in perspective so far folks, the Florida Panthers, playoff-less in their last ten years, are closer to making the playoffs than the Buffalo Sabres.
For me, I highly doubt that it is ownership change distractions that have the Buffalo Sabres trending towards a higher draft pick and early tee times – its a little bit of complacency. When has the last time the organization has made a trade to shake the roster up? Whose job other than supposed Captain Craig Rivet is in jeopardy? We have no one on this roster, or no one in the AHL that is allowed to challenge a player for their job. Nathan Gerbe is a regular on this roster despite his inability to put the puck in the net. When is the last time Tim Connolly scored a goal? Connolly has six goals in thirty-two games and is a minus 12. Why does he get chance after chance on this roster?
It’s getting to the point where, I once saw a game on the schedule and cleared my calender for the night, curled up in front of the television with a cold beer (or warm cup of coffee lately with the cold temperatures), now I am looking to see what else is on television or what needs to be done around the house. I still watch, but with half hearted interest at times. If that is happening with die hard fans, those “fringe” fans the NHL is banking on to save their sport, are getting farther and farther from the ice.
Good luck tonight Buffalo, hopefully its one of those games I will want to watch for three hours!