Knee-Jerk Reactions: Sabres vs Tim Connolly (and the Leafs)

Can you feel it? Can you tolerate another moment of it? Sabres fans spent almost a decade cheering, hoping, praying for Tim Connolly to work out in the Blue & Gold and it seemed like every time he came close to delivering…another injury. Except the year before his contract was up, and he got extended to 2 more years of injurious under-performance. Now in a cruel twist of fate, the Sabres are the injury-riddled hockey players while the Leafs roll in to town with their best season in a long, long time.

  • Right off the bat, Phil Kessel is the Mister Magoo of the National Hockey League. Every time someone overtakes him in the points race, blind luck just so happens to favor him and he finds himself the de facto points leader again. Whoopsie, I earned the Art Ross trophie.

Pictured here holding Nikolai Kulemin (from Wikipedia)

  • Sure enough, the Leafs fans are absolutely drowning out the Sabres fans in the building. This epidemic has been going on for a while, and there are only two solutions. 1.) Stop. Selling. Your season tickets. To Leafs fans. Or 2.) Drink more, yell more.
  • Joffrey Lupul buries a wrist shot assisted by Mister Magoo. At least one of them can enjoy the view. See that? That’s briniging two jokes together. Let’s see a Leafs fan do that. They can’t.
  • Just as I was starting to hate on Drew Stafford for being a bum, he comes in and scores the tying goal! He’s had 5 points in 5 games. If he follows suit with Ville Leino, he should throw an elbow, get suspended a game, and get injured soon.
  • The inexplicable chills down your spine were caused by Brayden McNabb absolutely destroying Mikhail Grabovski. I know McNabb’s coming up on his 10 games, where he’d have to pass waivers to get sent back down to Rochester, but who wants to see that? Really? This kid is playing like rookie Tyler Myers.
  • Dion Phaneuf (pronounced: Dee-Onn) ripped home a power play goal of Toronto’s own to give the Leafs their second lead of the night. Unlike his cartoonish teammates, the Leafs captain is more like a muppet.

Thank you for this gem

  • Just like that, Thomas Vanek responds with a big game-tying power play goal of his own! That play was entirely caused by Zack Kassian‘s hard work, and was executed by Vanek threading the needle. #VanekIsTheCamel
  • Play of the game: the entire Sabres team avoiding the puck that Christian Ehrhoff hand-passed until he came up and touched it himself. That took incredible focus from everyone involved.
  • Marc-Andrew Gragnani had all the time in the world alone in front of the net, and opted to continue being the team goat instead of shooting. The freaking. Puck.
  • Bagged milk and round bacon suck. Just sayin’.
  • Tim Connolly, for all the hype, hasn’t done anything too special for this game. He is rocking his 2007 facial hair. You know…cuz that’s cool, right? Mmmmmmmmustache.
  • Well now the Leafs are playing like the team we’ve known for the last decade. The parade to the penalty box grows and Tyler Ennis takes full advantage by absolutely ripping a slapshot past James Reimer.
  • Optimus Reim? Please. Number 34 is looking more like Meltdown Magnus tonight.
    …that was a Transformers joke. No one’s making you read this.
  • Zack Kassian just got absolutely leveled from behind, in to the boards, courtesy of Dion Phaneuf. The league is going to review this hit, and mark my words…they will find that Phaneuf does not in fact play for the Bruins. I’m calling a one or two game suspension.

"Unless, of course, the Bruins had interest in acquiring him in the future. We can't set a precedent here." - Fake quote from YouTube

  • And now Andrej Sekera scores a power play goal of his own! Congrats, Leafs. You have allowed the 3 Sabres I constantly say should be traded to score tonight. If I didn’t have the joy of seeing the Sabres up 4 to 2, I’d be bitter.
  • Remember when Sabres fans were upset that Clarke MacArthur got traded? Yeah, me neither.
  • Nikolai Kulemin got mauled down and was awarded with a penalty shot, which he buried to make this a one goal game. Because what’s a Sabres game without possibly blowing a 2 goal lead?
  • Vanek put the Sabres up by one thanks to a perfect play by Mike Weber and a beauty of a pass from Derek Roy. Don’t worry, though. Grabovski was able to capitalize on a defensive breakdown and keep this game at a heart-racing closeness. Damn it. #VanekIsTheCamel
  • With a few incredible saves from Ryan Miller, and a near empty-netter from Ehrhoff, the Sabres were able to preserve a victory in regulation. It’s all the sweeter because it was Toronto, but also because the Sabres were able to explode offensively. 5-4, Sabres take it. Leafs blow.

Tweet of the game is from Joe Spence:



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Tags: Boston Bruins Buffalo Buffalo Sabres Drew Stafford Eastern Conference Free Agency Hockey Jason Pominville Lindy Ruff NHL Northeast Division Patrick Kaleta Philadelphia Flyers Ryan Miller Sabres Stanley Cup Stanley Cup Playoffs Terry Pegula Thomas Vanek Tim Connolly Toronto Maple Leafs Trade Deadline Tyler Ennis Tyler Myers

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