Maybe he can’t believe it, that’s why he’s kneeling on the ice. I don’t think I believe it yet either, but the Buffalo Sabres control their own destiny in the chase for the 2012 playoffs. With a significant and statement worthy win over the Washington Capitals last night, the Buffalo Sabres now sit in sole possession of the eighth and final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference. With a half dozen remaining games on the schedule, eighth place should not be the end of the conversation.
I know, I know, I had written the team off when they were in last place, writing that there was no time to recover and dig out of the hole they had dug – but something has clicked with this team, and before this winning streak – even if they made the playoffs, I had left them dead in the water in the first round.
By taking the wind out of a desperate team in the Washington Capitals – is there a team that the Buffalo Sabres should fear going into the final games of the regular season? Should they be playing for a particular matchup?
The season is far from over. While they hold a two point lead on the Caps, they could lose that position and slip back out of the playoffs. They can also catch the Ottawa Senators for seventh place. The sixth place New Jersey Devils are only four points out, and the second place and division lead is only five points out – and the Sabres play the Bruins on the final game of the season, which could ultimately be a “play-in” game for the Northeast Division title. Go ahead, tell me its impossible. I might believe you and let my realistic site take over and tell you this team will fall apart and lose all of the ground they have worked to achieve. At the same time, I fully believe in this team to be raising a division banner at the start of next season.