Oct 5, 2013; Pittsburgh, PA, USA; Buffalo Sabres goalie Jhonas Enroth (1) on the ice against the Pittsburgh Penguins during the second period at the CONSOL Energy Center. The Pens won 4-1. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

Daily Poll: What Would The Buffalo Sabres Have To Do In Order To Qualify This Season as a Success?

Fellow Buffalo Sabres fans: week one is in the books, and the Sabres are already making the case for the worst team in the NHL.

An 0-3 start . . . two goals scored in three games . . . seven goals allowed, a number that would be much, much higher had Ryan Miller and Jhonas Enroth not played out of their minds . . . oof.   It’s a tough start, made especially more difficult to swallow given the fact that this is probably a good indication of how the rest of the season will go.

Depending on how you approach this season, however, this rough start may not be a bad thing.  Look: if you’re the sort of person who feels that, since you are spending your money on the product that is the Buffalo Sabres, the organization should be at least trying to field a competitive team this season, you cannot be happy with the team you have watched play so far.  This current iteration of the Sabres is about as far removed from being a playoff team as a youth hockey team is, so if you believe that the team should always be doing everything in its power to qualify for the playoffs, chances are you will not find this season to qualify as a success.

However, if you’re more of a patient person, this season could be fun to watch.  The Sabres have a nice, young team that is going to struggle to find its footing early on, but which may end up being a nice surprise by the conclusion of the 2013-2014 season.  You might not care about whether you are paying NHL prices for an AHL team (essentially); you’re just looking forward to watching players such as Zemgus Girgensons, Mikhail Grigorenko, Rasmus Ristolainen, and others grow before your very eyes.

Hence, the reason for today’s poll: what do you, as a Buffalo Sabres fan, think would constitute a “successful” season for this franchise in 2013-2014?  Success is clearly in the eye of the beholder, and I’m curious, so vote, and leave your comments below!

What would you consider to be a "successful" year for this current Sabres roster?

View Results

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Tags: Buffalo Sabres

  • Cory Buck

    First pick. The Sabres have a number of second line prospects at forward, but they need a top flight guy. Only way they do that is with a top pick. I really don’t care about a spirited playoff run that’s doomed to fail one way or the other.

  • Vic Soga

    Fire Mr Regier. Hire a general manager who will hire an experienced coach, not Gordon, not Sacco. Grigorenko must be sent down. Sorry Sabre fans but you need to hear the truth. Raising my season ticket price by 4% and going 0-3 does not sit well. Where was Mr Pegula and staff at the front door on opening night? A lit up wrist band is all you get on opening night? Even the Leafs gave out scarves again!

    • Vic Soga

      I am sorry I forgot, the Sabre money is being spent across the street.

      • Kevin

        Complain all you want about buying tickets and the price going up, they are still the lowest in the league. i know that’s not much comfort, but think about how much worse it could really be ticket wise. I don’t know all the numbers I am just going by what I have read. Yell at me all you want ’cause I don’t live there, but I wish I did.

        • Vic Soga

          Richard and Kevin:
          Being a Buffalo season ticket holder for over 16 years and sharing season’s tickets with the Toronto Maple Leafs for 10 years, I have seen the good and bad. The Buffalo good in 1999 and the possible bad in 2013-2014.
          I always complained about the Leaf prices going up but at least they are heading in the right direction in making the playoffs last year and starting 3-0. We are trending in the reverse.
          Without Vanek and Miller, we would be the worse team in the NHL. At least if we had new management in place, we could always hope.
          Travelling 2 1/2 hours to every Sabres game is loyalty. Watching them play isn’t. Also I hate the Leafs.
          I hope Zadorov sticks and not sent back to my hometown Junior team. He is the only one that will put fear in opposing forwards. Opposing forwards do not have that fear now.

          • http://SabreNoise.com/ Richard Spalding

            I know I have said this before, but this is why I have a hard time with people saying, “Play for last place and a draft pick.” I don’t pay money to go see a movie that sucked; if a director doesn’t make good movies, I don’t throw money his way. I don’t pay money to watch a rock band I cannot stand. So why do so many people have no problem buying tickets for a team that has no interest in giving you an entertaining product? Weird. Another drum that I have banged all off-season: the Sabres didn’t have to rely solely on the draft to rebuild. They could ave acquired a free agent, or a player via a trade, here and there to facilitate the process. Instead, they seem ok with saying, “Eh, we’re going to muddle our way through this season, but we’ll get there eventually.” If that’s their attitude, they should run some crazy cheap ticket specials this year, IMO.

          • Vic Soga

            Or Fan Appreciation Nights after each 10 home games instead of one at the end of the year?

          • http://SabreNoise.com/ Richard Spalding

            More like Fan Appreciation night is EVERY night! Yeah, your idea is probably more feasible.

          • Vic Soga

            No you are more right. Sabre fans who do not have seasons tickets are lucky as it is now a buyers market to buy Sabre Tickets. Too many are now on sale on StubHub. It makes it harder for me to sell my tickets. Sounds like the housing market.

          • Kevin

            Good points by both of you.

          • Dano

            “So why do so many people have no problem buying tickets for a team that has no interest in giving you an entertaining product? Weird.”

            I can only speak from being a fan of the game. Not so much just ‘ The Sabres! ‘ but of the game itself.

            I often find myself at MSR High School Games. I find myself at ToshCollins/Caz Rink. I watch a bunch of ‘ nobody kids ‘.

            Of those kids, Kaleta, Kennedy, Foligno, Gionta, Kane, Kevin Quick, Lee Stempniak, Chris Mueller.. Ive seen them all play. Im sure Im missing a few names.

            Local Boys whom made it to the show. I went a different route but I shared part of the dreams they all have realized.

            The money for my tickets promotes a big business called the ‘ NHL ‘. Some say hate the game and not the ‘ playas ‘ but that is the opposit with Hockey.

            Hockey isnt like the NBA or NFL. There arent gangbangers shooting up clubs. How often do we see ( in comparison ) a professional athlete from the AHL/NHL being charged with violent crimes?

            One of my first memories of Hockey was at the Aud. A bunch of us in PeeWee were skating around for some pee-wee event. Out came Floyd Smith. He then introduced us to King Kong Korab, Don Edwards and 2 or 3 others.

            Point being, unlike most sports, the money in hockey does ‘ trickle down ‘. The players are heavily encouraged to go back into their hometowns and promote the sport. We pay their salaries.

            ‘ Entertaining ‘ is different for each of us. I can watch a high scoring north/south game or a brawlfest. I like a defensive 2-1 scored game. I like watching a team getting desperate at times.

            I would encourage those whom dont like the product on the ice to NOT buy tickets. Its their money.

            The main problem with the Sabres in Buffalo is if enough people ditch their tickets due to not liking the product they are seeing, theres a waiting list for people to buy them up. Canada is ( literally ) within eye-sight and the people in Saint Catherines and Hamilton all the way to London will come to the games. Theres even fans in Toronto ( no names mentioned, dont want them to be called a traitor to the leafs ;) ) whom will buy tickets!

            I do agree that the draft isnt the only way to rebuild. There are/were other options that could be looked into.

            I do think ticket money in *our area* does see its way back into the community at some levels. Look across from the arena, theres a HUGE physical fact of such for everyone to view.

          • http://SabreNoise.com/ Richard Spalding

            You bring up some excellent reasons for supporting the Sabres! Bravo! I still feel the Sabres should have at least tried to enhance their prospect pool by pursuing free agents or a trade here and there, but that doesn’t mean I am going to stop supporting the team, which is how all true fans should feel. Thanks!

    • http://SabreNoise.com/ Richard Spalding

      A wrist band- seriously? Hmmmm. Hey – I get ya. One reader pointed out that the Sabres are playing as well as you can expect, given the fact that they basically an AHL team – but you’re not paying AHL prices, are you, so how can that make season ticket holders happy? The promise of “We’ll be good eventually” would only work if you lowered prices until “eventually” arrives!

      • Vic Soga

        Please read my reply to Kevin. Thanks.

  • davidmuscalo

    I really didn’t like any of the choices, but I selected the first choice because it is the only likely bright spot we will see this season. Personally, I can’t think of anything short of a deep run in the playoff that, in my eyes, would make this a successful season.

    That said, there are changes that could be made during the season that would give me hope for next season. Those changes, in order of preference, are:
    1. Terry Pegula awakes from his coma and fires Black and Regier; 2. The Sabres buyout or trade Stafford; the Sabres buyout or trade Myers; 3. Ennis is allowed to go into free agency without and offer from the Sabres; 4. the Sabres resign Vanek to a long-term contract; 5. the Sabres resign Miller, and the Sabres resign Ott.

    • http://SabreNoise.com/ Richard Spalding

      I like your options very much so! I was only focusing on the players’/team’s results, because if I were to try and conduct a poll that asked what fans truly wanted to see this season . . . sigh, I couldn’t provide enough options!

  • Kevin

    What the Sabres really need to get them to some of the places in your choices are finishers. I think Thomas Vanek is the only finisher we have. The rest just are just hit and miss. Kinda like a blind squirrel finding a nut. The squirrel is bound to find one at some point.

  • Jes

    Honestly being competitive and missing the playoffs by a hair is a failure IMO. Either make the playoffs or make that play for the first overall pick.