It’s Thomas Vanek Appreciation Day!
Aww. Our little slag-faced whore is growing up so fast! I have to admit, I wasn’t sure this day would ever come, but today we celebrate and give thanks for one Mr. Thomas Vanek.
All season long the Sabres’ interviews have been all about “leadership blah blah blah inconsistent blah blaaah blech blah HONK blah streakystreakstreak blahblah leadership leadership leadership.” Then one day, Vanek was all, “Fuck this. We’re getting into the playoffs, SO SHUT YOUR PIE HOLE BUCKY GLEASON, ” and then, just like the bearded fella in the Men’s Warehouse commercials, he turned to the camera pointed his finger and said, “Buffalo fans, come playoff time, you’re going to like the way you look. I guarantee it.” (Okay, that’s not exactly what he said, but that’s what he meant. I’m sure of it.)
Listen, for most of the season, Vanek has been grimacing his way right into the TWC doghouse, but I’m nothing if not forgiving, especially when a dude scores three goals in four minutes to erase a deficit and win the game. The Willful Caboose is all about giving credit where credit is due. (In fact, I might owe Tim Connolly a tiny apology. It’s too soon to tell.) Thomas Vanek was nothing short of dazzling last night. He was bewitching. He stepped up to the plate, and then he picked the plate up and threw it into the Lightning goal. It would be insane to expect this kind of play with any regularity, but last night Thomas Vanek made me perk up and reset the bar for the rest of the season.
Depending on what happens with Soupy this week, certain people are going to try to tell us that the future of the Buffalo Sabres looks grim. I think Thomas Vanek would beg to differ. Today is Thomas Vanek Appreciation Day in honor of the guy we have locked up for the next seven (hopefully awesome) seasons.