PreGame Skate: Ottawa Senators

If I could have your attention please, thank you.  If you started the season in a red, white, and blue uniform in Rochester, raise your hand – we need to get an accurate count for the team dinner.  Wait a minute, lets do it this way, if you started in Buffalo this year, please raise your hand – lets count the smaller group first. 

Ok – so my attempts at satire there probably aren’t that funny at a time when the Buffalo Sabres are trying desperately to hold onto a spot in the top eight teams of the Eastern Conference.  Anything but a regulation win for the Buffalo Sabres tonight against the Ottawa Senators drops the Sabres in the division, out of the playoff picture – and the bottom of the barrel is in site. 

You want a potential highlight?  Something to look forward to in tonights game?  Well there are actually a couple of things to look forward to.  Despite losing the game, the Sabres played well defensively against the Senators in the last outing.  IF the Sabres can muster together a similar effort – they might stand a chance at holding on to hope. 

Lord, save us all from a hope tree that has lost the faculty of putting out blossoms.  –Mark Twain

In order for that hope to come to blossom, the Sabres require their goaltenders to play much better in net.  Quieting the masses of Jhonas Enroth for president cheers, the rookie netminder has come back to down to earth lately; and Ryan Millers numbers are astronomical compared to his Vezina and Olympic caliber numbers. 

Another positive tonight is Buffalo Sabres fans will, at least on television get to see Foligno vs. Foligno – as Sabres forward Marcus Foligno gets to don Blue and Gold like his dad for the first time in a regular season game.  While brother Nick Foligno (who just recently hit 300 games in the NHL) will suit up opposite his younger brother for the Sens.  With many rookies have potted their first NHL goal this year, we shall wait and see if the younger Foligno will pay tribute to his father the way the elder Nick did.  When Nick scored his first NHL goal, he lept off the ice in a similar fashion to his father.  In his interview after the game, he told reporters not to expect that anymore – it takes a lot of a player to do that, and he admitted he couldn’t see how his father did it every time he scored.  What a thrill for Sabres fans who remember “Jumpin Mike” Foligno to see the leap celebration in Blue and Gold one more time. 

Joining Foligno in Blue and Gold for the first time this year is Rochester Native Derek Whitmore.  As the injuries continue to mount the Sabres are having to reach deeper and deeper into the pool of prospects in Rochester. 

Abandon hope ye who enter here. 

That is beginning to be the motto of the sports fan in the city of Buffalo.  Penned in ink for the first time in the 14th century, the supposed inscription to the entrance to Hell could be sold on T-Shirts with Bills and Sabres logo’s holding the banner.  With the Bills plummeting the last seven games to the losing column, with not much hope of resurrecting the season (or the want to) the Sabres slide down the standings is similar. 


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