Thursday, November 19, 2009

Recap: 11/19/09 Sabres vs. Panthers

Recap (courtesy Sabres.com)

Well, that was a pretty crappy night to be at the arena.  I didn't realize quite how crappy until I saw the stats afterwards.  17 of 49 on faceoffs and 25 giveaways?  Geez, no wonder we lost the puck possession battle.  Throw in a team that loves to shove five in the neutral zone at all times, and that makes for rather unwatchable hockey.  But despite all this, the Sabres were still in it until Kaleta's boneheaded interference penalty with 2:19 left.  Yeah, boneheaded.  Some folks were unhappy with the call, but he clearly played the man and not the puck, and with Patty's rep that's going to send him to the bin.  Every time.  You could just feel whatever life the Sabres had left just being sucked right out of them at that point, and they responded by giving up goals like it was going out of style, making the game seem more lopsided than it really was.

So that I'm not a total Nancy Negative... Staffy scored his 6th with a prototypical power forward drive to the net from the corner, the one we all wish he'd whip out every game.  MacArthur also got his 6th off a Vanek rebound after Rivet made a great drive behind the net, then an even better seeing-eye pass to Vanek in front.  So there you go, some good things.

Other than that, I have nothing else to say about the game itself.  It was a turd and I'd like to forget it.  I'd now like to vent about the douchebag quotient in my general vicinity because some of the fans in my section flat-out SUCKED.  I have very little tolerance for people who do nothing but bitch and moan and scream angry things, especially at a team on a three-game winning streak and in first place in the division.  We get it, you paid big money for those tickets, and gosh darn it, you're going to voice your opinion!  But if you go beyond the typical whining and complaining, if you show up at the arena with a chip on your shoulder just waiting for something to go wrong so you can get self-righteously angry, if you truly aren't enjoying the game - why do you show up?    We know last night was a bad effort.  We know the powerplay was terrible.  We know Miller was off.  But all you're doing is make life miserable for those around you.  Stay home.

Specifically: there was a woman in the last row who was personally offended every time the Sabres failed to appease her.  It's tough to describe, but this went way beyond the usual booing.  This woman was seriously furious with the Sabres, for everything - whether it was a defensive lapse, a turnover, or something that should not be chastised, like a good scoring chance on which Vokoun made a great save.   She screamed at the players like she was trying to scold her children for putting the cat in the blender.  The best part was that she apparently brought her young son to the game.  Way to teach him how to enjoy the game, lady.  Twice she shouted, again very angrily and for no particular reason: "Vanek, you're killing me."  Yeah, I wish he would.

Also, to the woman who sat two seats away from me who clearly believed there was a reward for the fan who could launch the most F-bombs -  I was not personally offended by this, but I've got a two-year-old kid sitting on my lap.  The LAST thing I need is for her to repeat that.  Show some class. 

OK, that's off my chest now and I feel better.  Bring on Boston.

I almost completely forgot to mention this, and it's a happier way to conclude the recap portion of this post.  My daughter, Sarah, loves Sabretooth.  I mean, absolutely adores him.  So when I discovered at the Flames game on Friday night that he usually makes an appearance after the game, we decided to wait for him (along with a handful of other kids and their parents). Sure enough, Tooth came out where I was told he would, and Sarah was able to give him a big hug and a high-five, and cling to his leg for a bit.  The smile on her face made me forget all about the outcome of the game, at least for a little bit.

In blog-related news: for all of my loyal readers - yes, that means you, sir - I apologize for the lack of posting the last two weeks. As a new blogger, I am still trying to figure out what works and what doesn't, both in terms of what my time allows for as well as what makes a post interesting and enjoyable.  To that end, I'm not going to recap every game anymore (especially those I don't watch live), and to even things out I'm going to try to post more things than aren't just recaps or previews.  Because Lord knows, there's enough of that out there.

I have now totally set a record for italics with this post.  You're welcome.

Next game: 11/20 vs. Boston.  The Bruins are decimated by injuries so let's take advantage of them before they get healthy.

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