If the Buffalo Sabres enjoy another stellar season in their Goathead alternates, should they mull bringing back the iconic black and red full-time?
I often refer to the Buffalo Sabres as the Blue and Gold on this page, and I have seen others do the same. But I also feel none of us would have any qualms with nicknaming them the Black and Red should they return to wearing the Goathead look full-time down the road, perhaps as early as 2024-25.
Last season, I penned an article stressing that the Sabres should keep the Goatheads in the uniform rotation. We now know the uniform will return for another 15 games in 2023-24. And if the Sabres excel in the look for a second straight season, they need to seriously consider promoting it to full-time status, which would necessitate them to bring back a variation of the road whites to match.
Buffalo Sabres played well in the Goatheads between 1996 and 2006, 2022-23
During the nine years when the Goathead look dominated (the 2004-05 season was canceled thanks to the lockout), Buffalo made the playoffs six times, and even found themselves in the 1999 Stanley Cup Final. They also made three appearances in the Conference Finals.
Following their return to the blue and bold in 2006-07 with yet another radical uniform redesign, Buffalo went back to the Conference Finals, but it was also the last season to date that they won a playoff series. Since returning to their pre-1996 logo (but with navy blue, gold, and silver as the color scheme), the Sabres have seen just one playoff series when they lost four games to three against the Philadelphia Flyers.
Clearly, history is on the Buffalo Sabres side for those who may lobby for the team to elevate the black and red back to full-time status at some point in the future. As for me: If the Sabres enjoy yet another remarkable outing in their alternates, as I stated in a recent bold prediction piece, then they must seriously consider bringing them back as the primary.
(Historical data provided by Hockey-Reference)