No sense in being subtle or extra-creative for this piece: the Buffalo Sabres flat-out failed to show up yesterday in their game against the Montreal Canadiens, and as a result, they have some atoning to do this afternoon. Here are the players that I expect to see give the cliched “110%” today.
I don’t expect Vanek to have a big game because he needs to atone for yesterday’s effort; I expect him to have a big game because his team will lose without it. His teammates may not agree with that sentiment, but so far, they have not proved me wrong. In the three wins the Sabres have earned, Vanek has scored 11 points. Thomas Vanek knows his team needs him, and he will put them on his back today, win or lose.
“Hello, Mr. Stafford? This is the attendance office calling. We see your son, Drew, hasn’t shown up for the last few days. Can you explain to us why?” In the past four seasons, Stafford has tallied 50, 52, 34, and 45 points. In eight games this year, he has 3. I see he’s still on the roster, and logging playing time. The alternate captain better show up today, or I may have to change that A on his jersey to an F.
Looking at the numbers Ott put up in Dallas, I see he is a reliable 30+ points scorer a year. So far: two. I appreciate the grit he brings to the team; I’d appreciate some help in the scoring department, too. Let him prove there was a good reason why Buffalo went out and grabbed him, instead of pursuing a true number one center.
I’ve dedicated a lot of ink to pointing out Myers’ struggles, and I have been very open about saying I think he deserves to watch a game from the press box. Well, if Lindy Ruff is going to keep playing him, at some point I would hope that Tyler decides to give the Buffalo faithful a strong, focused, and smart effort in a game. Today would be good, especially if he has any bit of pride left in him.
There you have it: my boys to watch tonight. I’ll check back in tomorrow to see how these guys fared; until then, enjoy the game, then come back here for our game recaps!