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Sabres vs. Flyers Game 4 4/20/11 Postmortem April 20, 2011

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Do or die? I’d say so. Let’s get this thing started!

Liked:

  • Kaleta makes his presence felt in his first shift.
  • The crowd sounds alive tonight.
  • The Sabres are really buzzing in the first three minutes. Make that five minutes…
  • I approve of Drew Stafford on the penalty kill.
  • Butler saves his goaltender’s bacon. Miller owes him a steak.
  • Pommer gets his first of the playoffs off a gorgeous pass from Niedermayer.
  • The Sabres are on the power play because Carcillo is a stupid hockey player.
  • Gerbe goes through three guys and still gets a shot off. Heh.
  • Tyler Myers makes an all-star play to prevent a goal. Miller’s going to be doling out steaks to the D with the way things are going.
  • Myers can’t BELIEVE he hit the post on that one, but Timonen takes a penalty hauling Grier down.
  • Apparently Myers is okay from his collision in the first period. Thanks, hockey gods!
  • Miller makes a big stop on Richards.
  • The Sabres are on the Flyers like white on rice here in the first 10 minutes of the second period. The line of Gaustad, Kaleta, and Boyes is the Flyers’ worst nightmare right now.
  • Vanek strips the puck quite neatly. hee hee hee
  • Kaleta out-muscled a guy behind the Flyers net like he was an annoying little gnat.
  • The Flyers take a too-many-men penalty in the waning moments of the second period. In obvious news, now would be a good time to take a two-goal lead.
  • Richards gets five minutes for elbowing. Amanda approves.

Didn’t like:

  • Weber gets called with a silly penalty. Borderline, but what can you do?
  • Stafford negates the power play with a holding penalty. Again, dubious.
  • Connolly lets his man go on the power play and the Flyers nearly score short-handed.
  • Ennis doesn’t look right. Neither does Leopold.
  • Boyes hits the second post of the period.
  • Myers takes a knee-on-knee hit from Carter and goes down like the giant he is. The building shook.
  • Wow. That was one of the worst five-minute power plays I’ve seen in my entire life.

On to game five!

Sabres vs. Wild 3/6/11 Postmortem March 6, 2011

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Sorry I haven’t been posting more. Real life is getting in the way. But today I’m here, and I’m ready to roll!

Liked:

  • WHAT a play between Vanek, Montador, and Pominville. When I saw all those passes I started to groan, but they converted.
  • Early in the game Enroth is coming up with some big saves.
  • Montador seems to make his defense partner better, no matter who the partner is.
  • Niedermayer scores! Niedermayer scores! *checking outside for pigs flying*
  • I like Lindy using some different guys on the penalty kill. There’s no reason guys like McCormick can’t kill penalties.
  • Sabres with some good offensive zone pressure here in the third period.
  • Enroth makes some timely saves to keep the Sabres in the game in the third period.
  • Montador showing good desperation, diving at the blue line to get the puck out of the defensive zone.
  • I like that they’re shooting from EVERYWHERE.
  • I’m going to give that fight to McCormick by unanimous decision…
  • WOW – what a save by Enroth! If they lose this game you won’t be able to blame it on goaltending.
  • DREW Stafford!

Didn’t like:

  • Poor Vanek. He’s got, what, fifty people there watching him and he misses a gimme.
  • Not a real impressive power play, guys.
  • Enroth had no chance on either goal so far.
  • Punching people is a penalty, Tyler Myers.
  • Ouch! I hope Kaleta is okay. That looked super-painful.

Sabres WIN in OT 3-2. On to Pittsburgh!

Sabres New Year’s Resolutions December 31, 2010

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In the spirit of being the ever-helpful fan that I am, I thought I’d give the boys some ideas about New Year’s resolutions. Here’s hoping they keep these suggestions and learn them, know them, live them.

Luke Adam: Continue to grow as a hockey player, both physically and skill-wise, and displace one of the barnacles hanging off the Sabres’ ship [see Connolly, Tim].

Tim Connolly: Start scouting for a team who’s looking for an oft-injured, highly-talented center who left his potential back in his high school rink (ED note: harsh, I know, and argue with me if you think you can win. Addt’l ED note: you can’t win.)

Tyler Ennis: Watch old tapes of Maxim Afinogenov. Watch new tapes of Maxim Afinogenov WHO IS IN THE KHL BECAUSE HE STICKHANDLED TOO MUCH.

Paul Gaustad: Remember that there’s more to hockey than being good at faceoffs.

Nathan Gerbe: Keep a picture of a hockey net on the fridge so it can be easily recognized during games.

Mike Grier: Learn how to score on a breakaway.

Jochen Hecht: Become the Angry German we would much rather see than this mopey dude.

Pat Kaleta: Get some new body parts and see a migraine specialist.

Cody McCormick: Send a late Christmas card to Adam Mair.

Rob Niedermayer: Invest in some “Just for Men” so the guys will making comments about the gray hair.

Jason Pominville: Populate his town, maybe make it necessary to open up a Planned Parenthood clinic there.

Derek Roy: Learn how to dance on one leg so trips to SoHo are still a possibility.

Drew Stafford: Figure out which personality is the real Drew Stafford – the kick-ass, take no names winger or the totally-invisible, furry-loving one. Kill the totally-invisible, furry-loving one.

Thomas Vanek: Do some research on Valium.

Chris Butler: Write a dissertation on how last season’s horrible play could be attributed to being paired with Craig Rivet. Try to figure out angle for explaining away this year’s horrible play.

Jordan Leopold: Look up what “egregious turnover” means and then stop committing them.

Steve Montador: Buy an “I’m awesome and I want a contract extension” t-shirt to wear around the rink.

Shaone Morrisonn: Figure out how to stay healthy for more than one game at a stretch. And call Mike Green to taunt him about his Vespa.

Tyler Myers: Use zinc lozenges before heading to Calgary next time.

Craig Rivet: Pick out a nice retirement home.

Andrej Sekera: Buy a baseball bat to keep away all the women flocking in his direction since the Buffalo Spree’s “Most Eligible Bachelor” list came out.

Mike Weber: Learn how to fight.

Ryan Miller: Start threatening teammates with show tunes in the locker room if they don’t kick their games up a notch or three.

Patrick Lalime: Bask in the reflected glory from Ryan Miller’s warm words at the NHL Awards last year.

Sabres Naughty or Nice List December 22, 2010

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I have decided to be the judge AND jury regarding whether the Sabres should be receiving lumps of coal or awesome presents. I have to say – it doesn’t look like Santa is going to be very busy in the Sabres locker room this year…

Nice:

Luke Adam: When called upon the kid has played pretty well.

Tyler Ennis: A little too much stickhandling for my peace of mind, but otherwise he’s growing into his own.

Patrick Kaleta: For the most part Kaleta has done what the Sabres pay him to do – annoy the hell out of their opponents.

Cody McCormick: This man has been a revelation. Give him whatever he wants – candy, records, hookers…

Drew Stafford: I’m giving Stafford a pardon off the “Naughty” list since when he’s in the lineup he’s been pretty effective.

Derek Roy: The only consistently good forward on the team.

Thomas Vanek: He’ll get a pass mostly because of the points he’s putting up. The -10 ain’t great, though. Maybe a stocking stuffer is all he’ll get.

Jordan Leopold: I know he makes egregious errors at times, but overall he’s been a steadying influence on the blue line. Plus, he gets points!

Steve Montador: Playing with Leopold seems to be agreeing with him.

Tyler Myers: I hemmed and hawed over this one, but I’ll put him in this category mostly because of the huge minutes he eats up and how he can still dominate when he’s feeling confident.

Andrej Sekera: He mostly makes it onto this list because of how good the Myers/Sekera has been lately. But I like the kid, too, and since I’m judge and jury I can do what I want.

Ryan Miller: ‘Nuff said.

Jhonas Enroth: Like Adam he’s played well when called upon.

Naughty:

Tim Connolly: I know he’s put up points – when he’s been in the lineup – but I just see nothing in him. This is an old, old song, and I’d like to throw the CD away.

Jason Pominville: Yes, I’m giving my favorite player a lump of coal. I don’t know what’s wrong, but please fix it. You’re making me sad.

Paul Gaustad: Mostly invisible.

Mike Grier: Ditto.

Jochen Hecht: A trainwreck for most of this season. Stop colliding with your own teammates at least, man!

Rob Niedermayer: Apparently he was hurt, but he’s also been a non-factor.

Nathan Gerbe: Taking around 30 games to score your first goal is not a good thing when you’re supposed to be a goal scorer, just FYI.

Craig Rivet: He needs to hang ’em up. Sorry, but he does.

Chris Butler: Struggling mightily, and making some costly mistakes.

Shaone Morrisonn: Apparently he’s been playing hurt too, which seems silly since the Sabres carry so many d-men on the roster.

Mike Weber: Another struggling young d-man. I really like Weber so I hope he can pull out of this.

Patrick Lalime: Same problem, different year…

 

Well, that ended up split almost evenly down the middle, which explains why the Sabres are so far out of the playoff race…

Do you disagree with any of my assessments? Let me know in the comments section!

Sabres vs. Bruins 12/15/10 Postmortem December 15, 2010

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So here we are again. The Bruins are quite good. Let’s see what the “new and improved” (aka healthy) Sabres can do…

Liked:

  • A no-look pass from Kaleta to McCormick that hit right on the tape? Nice!
  • So far Staffy has been a beast. Keep it up…
  • Public service message: if you haven’t seen the video of the Sabres doing their holiday visit to Childrens’ Hospital, here’s the link. Our Sabres look darn cute in Santa hats.
  • Nice play by Sekera to thwart a 2-on-1. I’m finding myself saying “Nice play by Sekera,” more and more these days. And that’s JUST FINE w/me.
  • Heh. Good boy, Kaleta. Take Ference off his game!
  • The Sabres capitalize on the power play. Loved seeing Vanek, Roy, AND Stafford pounding away right in the crease.
  • One of my followers on Twitter just said so far in the game Weber has five hits. The entire Bruins team? Seven. (H/T Curt Pasisz)
  • Stafford gets another goal. Good thing he’s in the lineup, since he’s apparently the only Sabre who can score a goal.
  • Aaaannnndddd Stafford gets the natural hat trick. If I’m not mistaken two out of three of the Sabres goals have been on the power play. How ’bout that?
  • Hee hee hee. Milan Lucic goes to the box for being a jerk. And all was right with the world.

Didn’t like:

  • Three shots on goal w/in the first thirty seconds? Um, Sabres, just a note: this is not an auspicious beginning.
  • If I was Thomas Vanek and getting the crap kicked out of me in front of the net on the power play I’d want to kill my teammates if they couldn’t even get a shot through.
  • I’m not convinced Stafford needed to take that penalty on the power play. He had Tyler “I cover twenty feet with every stride” Myers right next to him.
  • Oof! Curt Pasisz also just said that at the halfway point of the game the Sabres have 12 giveaways.
  • I was about to compliment Connolly, and then he took a penalty. Pffttt.
  • Memo to Ryan Miller: Stay in your crease. STAY. IN. YOUR. CREASE.
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