Earlier today, thousands of Buffalo Sabres fans tuned in to the Remembering RJ Ceremony to watch many speak highly of the famed play-by-play announcer.
Watching Remembering RJ and hearing Buffalo Sabres alumni, coaches, and Rick Jeanneret’s broadcast partners speak, there was one common denominator that jumped out. Between the remarkable stories, everyone, from Lindy Ruff to Joe Bowen to Rob Ray, weren’t shy on reminiscing how RJ made everyone better people on and off the ice, but also his glowing positivity day in and day out.
It doesn’t just show just how impactful RJ was to those he worked with since his career started in 1971, but it’s also something that we can take with us from now and well into the far future. Making the best out of every day, and every game, regardless of the result on the ice, is the best way for all of us to remember and honor the legendary broadcaster day in and day out.
As the 2023-24 NHL Season approaches, I personally know a few things: a) the Sabres are going to field perhaps their best hockey team since the 2010-11 season, and b) they are still going to suffer their fair share of losses, and some will be blowout losses – hey, it happens to the best teams.
Expressing positivity is the best way to remember Buffalo Sabres announcer Rick Jeanneret
Losses, lean periods, and losing streaks are the reality of an 82-game season, and RJ knew what this most recent playoff drought looked like better than most, if not everyone. Yet hearing the words from those who knew him well, it’s safe to say that he still found a reason to be positive even when the team was facing its darkest days on the ice.
To find the light even during those inevitable lean periods of the season is the best way to carry on RJ’s legacy. And if we all find the good even amidst the bad with this hockey team, both in 2023-24 and beyond, it will also pass RJ’s legacy, along with his legendary calls, to the next generation of Sabres fans.
If someone were to ask me, twenty years or so down the road, how I could possibly find a positive in such a devastating loss, I’m going to tell, or remind them, about RJ, and the positivity he brought regardless of the final result on the ice. Hopefully, they will see some light regardless of how dark things may seem on the ice.
We at Sabre Noise would like to thank the Buffalo Sabres and everyone involved for putting on such a memorable ceremony. And we cannot wait to continue honoring and remembering RJ throughout the 2023-24 season.