Archive for the 'Brad Boyes' Category

Down the Line

I promised myself that I wouldn’t start analyzing the Sabres until they’d played ten games, but I can’t hold myself back because I LOVE THEM SO MUCH. I just want to line the Sabres up, and walk down the line, ruffle their hair one-by-one, and tell them each why I love them so. You know what?  That’s exactly what I’m going to do.

I doubt the actual Sabres are willing to stand in a line for me, so you’ll just have imagine the hair tussling.

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The Sabres, presented in the order in which I think of them, which is probably a pretty good indication of the order of their awesomeness:

Thomas Vanek- Thomas Vanek, I’ve written many, many, many times about how incredible it is to watch you when you’re “on”. You’re just spectacular. But this season feels a little different. You seem so joyful out there. Joy is the one thing that has always been missing from your game. I’ll admit, your visible frustration on the ice has always made me a tad hesitant to really believe in you as “The Guy.” I’ve been joking for YEARS that you need therapy, and I’m starting to believe that maybe this summer you finally got some. (And just FYI, if I were running a professional sports team, sports psychology would be a requirement for every single player on my payroll, so, my insistence that you get therapy is really nothing personal. I only bring up the therapy with you because of all the Sabres, historically you’ve seemed to be the most crazypants. I guess that part is a little personal.) At any rate, as I wrote last night on Twitter, when you’re cool, everything’s cool. So, keep up the good work, and do whatever your therapist says. That guy/lady is a genius.

Jason Pominville- Jason, you’re a Sabre who I’ve always loved unconditionally, so it’s super fun to see you being all captain-ly and top-line-y. I don’t know how you do it, but you are the only hockey player I’ve ever seen who somehow manages to look adorable no matter what you’re doing. That’s a compliment (of course).

Ville Leino- Last night was extremely good for our relationship, Ville. After your pretty pass to Pommers for the goal, I wasn’t just happy for me, I realized I was genuinely happy for you. That doesn’t happen with every goal (for example, I don’t think Derek Roy has ever scored a goal that made think, “Oh, I’m so happy for Roy-Z!” His goals are just the garden-variety, “Hooray! The Sabres just scored and this makes me, Katebits, feel joy in my heart). Ville, I want you to be an awesome Sabre, and I feel extreme confidence that you WILL be an awesome Sabre, so just hang tight, buddy. You’ve got this. (Also, you and McCormick were strangely good together last night. That was weird, thrilling, and totally unexpected.)

Ryan Miller- *fist bump and chin nod of eternal respect*

Drew Stafford- How you doin’?

Tyler Myers- *gets on a step-stool in order to ruffle Tyler’s hair* Hey there big guy! You seem to be either totally awesome or totally terrifying. Last night you were totally awesome and it was really good to see. Just try to be awesome most nights. But don’t worry. The team is better this year. Not everything will go straight to hell if you have a few bad games in a row.

Christian Ehrhoff- I love how you shoot, and I also like how your lips always look like you’re wearing a tinted lip gloss.

Luke Adam- Lu-kie! Lu-kie! Lu-kie! Welcome to Buffalo, kiddo! You’re doing great. Just keep working hard, and when in doubt in the gym or out on the town, do what Goose does. Speaking of Goose…

Paul Gaustad- HONK! Goose, I’d like to encourage you to casually undress in the background of all your teammates’ interviews.

Andrej Sekera- You’re probably my favorite skater on the team. Good job.

Brad Boyes- Um, this is a little awkward. Usually Darcy’s trade deadline acquisitions are gone by now, but… you seem to still be here. Hm…. Oooh, I know! You have a very pleasant-looking face. Don’t let anyone ever tell you otherwise, Brad Boyes.

Derek Roy- I’m not exactly sure what’s wrong with you but you haven’t looked like yourself yet this season. Maybe you miss Vanek? I’m not too worried because apparently the Sabres don’t really need you to be awesome in order to win games. I have faith that you’ll pull it together soon. And if you don’t, well… *shrug* We apparently don’t really need you to win games! (That might sound a little harsh. Roy-Z, I think what I’m trying to tell you is: don’t get frustrated. When you suddenly get awesome again, it’s just going to make the Sabres LITERALLY UNSTOPPABLE, but for the time being, your atypical-averageness isn’t really doing any harm.

Cody McCormick- You were surprisingly good with Leino last night! Nice job. Everyone in Buffalo likes to root for you already, but if you can be the catalyst for getting Leino on track, I think we might erect a statue in your honor.

Tyler Ennis- Look, Tyler. I can’t lie. I’m a little worried about you. I’m not like, freaked about you, but I’m concerned. You need to tone down the “dipsy-doodling followed by a blueline turnover.” Just tone it down. Also, could you please clarify something? Is this actually you? That looks a LOT like Ehrhoff’s head on your body to me, but after an in-depth twitter investigation, the consensus seems to be that is IS you. I’m still not convinced. Your thoughts?

Jhonas Enroth- YOU ARE AN ELVISH HERO! Most of the time I forget all about you, but every time I remember you I get an incredible burst of confidence. Seriously. You might change everything this season. That’s how important and awesome you are. You might change everything.

Nathan Gerbe- Rock on, lil Honey Badger. Rock on.

Patrick Kaleta- Hey, Patty. You haven’t provoked my ire at all this season. Good job. Every once in a while, I think you’re Vanek on the ice. That amuses me.

Robyn Regehr- I can’t say I have any strong thoughts or feelings about you, but actually, that’s probably a good thing. You seem cool. Thanks for helping Mylers be less spazzy. I’m not going to ruffle your hair because, a.) you’re pretty much bald, and b.) you seem too dignified for such things. I’ll just shake your hand respectfully, instead.

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Ah, that felt great! It’s fun to love the Sabres! I’m a little concerned about the future of this blog (nothing kills The Willful Caboose faster than a complete lack of over-the-top outrage), but we’ll make do.  I’m sure I’ll find something to complain about eventually, but for now, I love these little buggers.

Twitterless: Day Two, “TWO POINTS, MOFOS!”

WE’RE CURRENTLY IN A PLAYOFF POSITION!!


Please read the following disclaimer before continuing:

DISCLAIMER: Almighty Hockey Gods, in no way, shape, or form is this post to be read as an assumption that the Sabres will be in a playoff position at the end of the year.  You are mighty and strong, and we know that you will rightfully smite those who take their playoff positions for granted.  The season is long, and there are still many games to be played.  Anything could still happen, which is why we will always remain faithful to your blessed word.  It is with great reverence to you that we celebrate the Sabres current position in the standings.   Thank you for sharing your wonderful game with us, mere mortals.  We pray to you for continued Sabres success.

For thine is the arena, and the slap shot, and the glory, forever and ever, Amen.

That said…

WOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!

The Sabres are certainly not perfect (you might want to reconsider the “give up a two goal lead almost every night” strategy, fellas), but they’re ours, and they are so very very lovable these days.  The season IS long, and we still have quite a way to go, but I don’t think it’s wrong to take a little moment to celebrate how far they’ve come.  These guys have battled admirably for many weeks, and while the 8th place slot is just a symbol today (nothing more), I’m really proud of this team.

A few thoughts from the game:

- How freaking great is it that we have a real, honest-to-goodness NHL-caliber goalie to back up Crunchy?  The backup situation has been so fraught with danger for the last few years, and it’s just SO good to realize that Lindy doesn’t have to play Miller every night.  And best of all?  When Lindy doesn’t play Miller, they might still win.

- Perhaps it’s just that the games mean so much more now, but I’ve been very  impressed with these last few games from an entertainment standpoint.  Hockey is fun and fast and exciting again!  (That really might be the difference between November hockey and March Playoff Push hockey.)

- I VERY briefly surrendered to my desire to tweet during this game right after Niedermayer scored.  (I mean, come on. N-I-E-D-E-R-M-A-Y-E-R SCORED!  That’s a totally tweetable occasion.)  But, I promise, I didn’t even check my @replies.  I just got in and got out.  However, the Wild almost immediately scored two goals.  So, fear not Sabres fans, I will not be tweeting again during my sabbatical, no matter how many goals Niedermayer scores before next Saturday.  The Hockey Gods still allowed the Sabres to win, so my indiscretion was apparently forgiven, but I shant make the same mistake twice.

- STAFF-Y!  STAFF-Y!  STAFF-Y!  That was a pretty foxy goal, no?

- Seriously though.  They need to stop giving up two goal leads.

- I’m still surprised to see Boyes out there with Vanek.  Every time I see him, I think, “DAMN!  LOOK AT MAIR GO!”  Unlike the other recent trade deadline day acquisitions, Boyes is, um, actually making a difference.  He is making the offense better, which is obviously exactly what he’s supposed to do. I was thinking the other day about how one of the problems with being a Sabres fan in recent years is this sense that we’re constantly losing good players and not replacing them.  Look at what Darcy just did!  He went out and got us a good player!  Just like that.

- That opening goal with Vanek to Pommers to Montador to Pommers was so so so so so pretty.  SO PRETTY.

- There was a sort of funny officiating moment tonight.  There was a play where the Wild were cycling the puck in the Sabres end (they might have been on the power play at the time), and the puck came verrrrry close to popping out.  The lineman ruled it out, but he did so by going down on one knee right on the blue line and VERY emphatically gesturing “OUT OUT OUT!”  It was very theatrical.  Then, the ref came over and helped the linesman to his feet and tapped him on the butt for good measure.  It was a pretty tough call (I thought the puck stayed in, actually), but I really enjoyed the linesman’s flamboyance.  I like it when the officials are a little dramatic.  This is show business, baby.

Happy Trade Deadline Day!

Today might be my favorite day of the hockey year.  July 1st is fun in theory, but trade deadline day is a whole lot dishier in terms of drama.  Plus, this year we have a new owner who is like, “Here’s a lot of money for you to spend, Darcy.  Go crazy. Do you think you might need more money? Because I have more. You know what’s probably easiest? Here’s my credit card. Just go nuts. And buy yourself something pretty while you’re at it.”

Over the last week or so I’ve been trying to brace myself for a typically restrained trade deadline day, because honestly, “restrained” really seems like it’s part of Darcy’s genetic code, but perhaps I’ve misjudged him. He’s already traded for a new guy!

Welcome to Buffalo, New Guy!

He looks nice!  His name is Brad Boyes.

Brad Boyes is a little confusing because these are his lifetime NHL stats:

What the eff, Boysie?

It’s a bit difficult to figure out what we’re dealing with here, but I don’t think there is any cause for alarm because as of right this minute, Boyes is the second highest scoring Sabre on the team.  (I know. Freaky. Why don’t we have anyone who can score?)  The big news is that he’s got another year at $4 million left on his contract.  So, if Boyes scores +30 goals next season we’ll call Darcy a genius.  If he scores 14 goals… not-so-much on the whole, “Darcy’s a genius” thing.

Since the real risk of Brad Boyes is his bloated salary, and we’re spending Uncle Pegula’s money here, I like this deal.  It’s fun to get a new player, and I think we can all agree that the Sabres need some fresh blood, even if that blood is a little on the streaky-for-entire-seasons-at-a-time side.  I’m just going to do the optimistic thing and cheerfully assume that Boyes will benefit from a change of scenery and a contract year.

So….HOORAYZIES!

Hopefully this is just the tip of the iceberg and somehow we’ll end up with all the good players in the league by the end of the day.  Fingers crossed, Sabres fans!

Sing-sing voice: *awwwk-wwward*

 


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