KFS II, Attempting to Right What Once Went Wrong: Max Afinogenov

I have a confession to make: Last year, even when I chose him as KFS, I knew full well that Max was not my real Favorite Sabre.  I basically chose him because while my affection for him is real, I knew he could be easily discarded once my true Favorite Sabre revealed himself.  Keep in mind that at this time last year I could barely tell the Sabres apart much less aptly choose my favorite.  I knew full well that he wasn’t the one, but I chose him anyway.  For this I owe him an apology.  Max, I used you and then I discarded you like a cheap piece of meat.  My bad.

In the interest in fairness, it’s time to put Max in the proper place on the scale of Kate’s Favorite Sabre.

The thing I find most interesting about my affections for Max is that they run so extremely hot and cold.  I mean, when he’s sucking (which let’s face it was nearly every second of last season) I’m likely to blame him for E-V-E-R-Y-T-H-I-N-G.  I blame him for every loss, I assume every offside he creates prevented a goal, I squawk at the television that he should be sent to Siberia to work in the salt mines during the day and at night he should be forced to write letters of apology to all the innocent Buffalonians whose lives have been ruined by lurchy skating and his haphazard stick handling.  When I hate Max, I hate him passionately, with the burning passion of ten million white hot passionate suns and all the passion that a passionate person can passionately feel.

But

When I like Max, he makes me laugh, which is really the highest compliment I can pay to a person I don’t know personally. Usually great hockey playing is exciting or astounding, and I suppose Max at his best is both of those things, but mostly I think he’s entertaining in a very gleeful way.  He’s funny to me, not in a laughing at him kind of way (there is ABSOLUTELY NOTHING funny about Max at his worst) but more in a laughing-at-the-glorious-existence-of-such-an-absurd-skater kind of way.  I can’t think of any other player in the entire league whose best playing inspires me to giggle happily.  I really like this about Max and I pray to Lindy Ruff that this season he’ll give me less reason to throw my borscht at the television in sputtering rage and more reason to chuckle with appreciation.

Max is kind of a hard guy to rank on the scale of Sabres because I either love him or hate him- there is no in between.  I’m going to give him the benefit of the doubt and assume that this year he’ll balance out the Infuriating Max with a little more Funny Max, and put him right in the middle of the pack, in the Hank Tallinder/Drew Stafford range.  He also gets many style points for having a cool girlfriend and for somehow maintaining an air of mystery and intrigue (possibly a Russian spy).

Oh, and he looks like Faye Dunaway.  Thumbs up there.

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11 Responses to “KFS II, Attempting to Right What Once Went Wrong: Max Afinogenov”


  1. 1 M.J. September 3, 2008 at 2:05 pm

    “Attempting to right what went wrong” could be the title of Max’s autobiography.

    Also awesome about Max? He is the only non-American born player I know whose English skills have somehow DECLINED during the course of his employment in the US. I can’t explain it.

  2. 2 Steph September 3, 2008 at 2:36 pm

    I think Max might be MY favorite Sabre though… (Mostly because I have a hard time saying my favorite Sabre is Ales Kotalik, as I always have to preface it with “okay it’s PROBABLY just because of his name, BUT…” :P)

  3. 3 Jennifer September 3, 2008 at 7:51 pm

    …..and put him right in the middle of the pack, in the Hank Tallinder/Drew Stafford range.

    Whaaaaat? You mean Tallinder is NOT at the top of the list? You’re just messing with us, right????? Tallinder is not higher on the list than the zombie. OMG, Kate, I think you have just destroyed all respect I had for you. *sulking*

  4. 4 Heather B. September 3, 2008 at 8:56 pm

    Jennifer, it’s all right. That just makes those of us who do put Hank at the top special :-D

  5. 5 Katebits September 3, 2008 at 9:44 pm

    Listen, this happened last year too! Pookie spent the entirety of competition trying to convince me that the only true choice was DREW STAFFORD. We can’t all have the same favorite Sabres! If we did, there would be no one to love Toni Lydman.

    Jennifer, it’s all right. That just makes those of us who do put Hank at the top special :-D

    (You guys are special alright. :P)

  6. 6 Shari September 3, 2008 at 10:44 pm

    I love Toni Lydman. He’s kinda like the blond Fonz….Aaaaaaay! And I’ll always love Max no matter what he does. Itshowiroll. : )

  7. 7 Pookie September 4, 2008 at 9:53 am

    Pookie spent the entirety of competition trying to convince me that the only true choice was DREW STAFFORD. We can’t all have the same favorite Sabres!

    And now I feel shame. Thanks, Staffy, for ruining EVERYTHING! We can’t all have the favorite Sabres, particularly when one of them is a brain-eating zombie LOSER!

    As for Max, the looking like Faye Dunaway covers up a lot of ills.

  8. 8 KozyShank September 4, 2008 at 12:57 pm

    Is it wrong to pick Nathan Gerbe as my favorite Sabre? He does fit most of the flow chart preferences, not to mention and I think it was written here, he is not miniature, tiny, diminutive or wee but rather….”fun size” much like your favorite Halloween candy.

  9. 9 Kathee September 4, 2008 at 2:01 pm

    In our household, “Afinogenov” is a swear word. Like if you stub your toe, as the stars are still flashing in your eyes, it is appropriate and even expected to shout “AFINOGENOV!!!!”

    And if someone gets the best of you or is pestering you, you must grumble, “Numminen.” Like on Seinfeld. :D

    But it still doesn’t make either one my favorite, according to the flow chart.
    We need to add the swear-word last name category!

  10. 10 TheTick September 4, 2008 at 6:47 pm

    Listen, this happened last year too! Pookie spent the entirety of competition trying to convince me that the only true choice was DREW STAFFORD.

    How can you not like him and his ANGRY EYEBROWS.

  11. 11 Jennifer September 4, 2008 at 8:21 pm

    (You guys are special alright. :P)

    That’s OK, I enjoy being special. It makes me, well, special! Heather, you are always welcome to join me in the “special section”. I enjoy the company!


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