Thursday, April 22, 2010

This Hockey Thing Isn't Working Out Too Well

Of all the hockey teams we could have picked this year to root for, it was the Buffalo Sabres that seemed like the natural choice. I've kind of always got the sense that they were the Milwaukee Brewers of the NHL. Both franchises have been around since the 1970's, they are both smaller market clubs, both have them have contested for a championship but have never won one, and both teams have a similar color scheme (they even both had a period in the mid-90's where they switched to different colors which are barely recognized by the fans). Sure, when we decided to get into hockey we could have gotten on the bandwagon of a team like the Red Wings or Penguins, but the Sabres just felt like our hockey team.

That's whats making this series against the Bruins so painful, as the Sabres are now down 3-1 to Boston after losing 3-2 in double overtime on Wednesday night. It's not just that they are losing, it's how the Sabres are losing. All season long, Buffalo has been 30-0-0 when leading after two periods. Well, in games three and four they lead after two periods, and then blew the lead both times. Wednesday night's game was even more heartbreaking, as the Bruins finally scored the game winning goal after they were awarded a power play. The power play being because the Sabres had too many men on the ice.

I really could leash into a long article about why we root for sports in the first place. Why we get our hopes up when we know that 99.9% percent of the time they are going to be crushed. I mean, how many times in the last decade did you and I think that the Packers were Super Bowl bound, only to see those hopes and dreams fade away? How euphoric was Milwaukee after CC Sabathia lead us to the playoffs, only to be chased out by the Phillies in the Wild Card round? How great was it to finally see the Bucks put something together this season before losing Andrew Bogut to a season ending injury? That's kind of what's happening with the Sabres right now. They played well all season, grabbed the three seed in the East, and now are giving games away when it matters.

Sure, the series is not over quite yet, and the Sabres still have a good enough team to put three games together. But as sad as it might be, the fact that the Sabres are a franchise with a diehard fanbase that rarely ever gets a return on their investment, makes me realize that they are my team after all.

Welcome to The Bucky Channel, Sabres fans. We're just as much as a sports blog as we are a support group.

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