Jason Smith Evaluates the Sabres

Dudes. Settle down. Is Brooks Orpik really that big a deal? Personally, I think not.

Look, I wish we had signed some sexy D during the opening of free agency too, but we know that’s not Darcy’s style. He’s told us this repeatedly.

Let’s all take a deep breath and concentrate on more pleasant matters, namely, Jason Smith. WGR is reporting that Jason Smith’s agent has had preliminary talks with the Sabres. Now, “preliminary talks” could mean almost anything, so I think it would be best if we all kept our pants on until further notice, but the WGR article contained one highly interesting tidbit.

“Breeze [Smith’s agent] told WGR that Smith has a nine-point criteria for deciding where to sign.”

He has a nine point system, you guys! I love a man with a plan!

As luck would have it, TWC has obtained exclusive rights to Jason Smith’s Patented Nine Point System For Choosing An NHL Team. Please join me in analyzing where Buffalo’s chances of signing Smith stand once the team and city has been through his rigorous nine-point system.

Jason Smith’s Patented Nine-Point System For Choosing An NHL Team:

Point the First: Is the team any good?

Well, define “good”, Mr. Smith. The Sabres can be and often are, quite good. Sometimes they suck though too. They really need some reliable stay-at-home defense, and they need some veteran leadership- which is where you come in. This might be a situation where a guy like you could come in and wind up getting WAY more credit than you probably deserve for turning the team around and getting them back on track. So yes, I have to say that the team IS pretty good, but there is lots of room for improvement. Buffalo’s score: 3 out of 5 chicken wings

Point the Second: Does the city have a major symphony orchestra with many foxy musicians?

We totally have that. Buffalo’s score: 5 out of 5 chicken wings

Point the Third: Can I afford a foxy house in this city?

Dude. On an NHLer’s salary you can buy the foxiest house in all the land. Buffalo has great houses and they are, in comparison to other NHL cities, dirt cheap. Buffalo’s score: 4 out of 5 chicken wings

Point the Fourth: How much of my life will be wasted in traffic jams?

NONE! None of your life will be wasted in traffic jams if you move to Buffalo! Urban flight and economic despair have their advantages, Mr. Smith! Buffalo’s score: 5 out of 5 chicken wing

Point the Fifth: I’m a low key guy. I like to mind my own business. Does this city allow for privacy?

Um, no. Upon arrival in Buffalo, all NHL players are required to turn over all financial statements, personal journals (including the ones from your most embarrassing adolescence), and all existing health records. Every man, woman, and child in Buffalo will recognize you and blog about your every move around town. Furthermore, every time you enter a grocery store or pick up your kid from school, we’re going to “chirp” at you about the power play. The good news is that we are, for the most part, pretty nice. Buffalo’s score: 2 out of 5 chicken wings

Point the Sixth: Does the coach of this team have yellow hair?

Lindy Ruff has the yellowest hair in the business. You will not find a more yellow-haired coach in the NHL. Buffalo’s score: 5 out of 5 chicken wings

Point the Seventh: Will my wife like it there?

Yes. She will. Unless she is lame. Buffalo’s score: 5 out of 5 chicken wings, unless Jason Smith’s wife is lame, in which case 0 out of 5 chicken wings.

Point the Eighth: I’ve always dreamed of signing a contract for 5 years/$25 million. Can I do that here?

No. First of all, you’re too old and slow for that contract. Secondly, no one around here is even sure if the mythical “5 for 25” actually exists. Rumors of its existence have been floating around since January ’07, but no one has ever actually seen it, much less applied it to an actual Sabres contract. If you want more information on this confusing topic, you’ll have to consult Buffalo’s 5-for-25iologist, Bucky Gleason. Buffalo’s score: 0 out of 5 chicken wings

Point the Ninth: Will the fanbase appreciate my quiet, hard working vibe?

Will we appreciate it? We practically burned the city to the ground when Chris Drury bolted! Not only will we appreciate it, we will fall madly in love with it and hold it tight to our collective bosom. No quiet, hard working vibe shall ever be under-appreciated by the citizenry of Buffalo, NY. Buffalo’s score: 5 out of 5 chicken wings


The Buffalo Sabres scored 34 out of 45 possible chicken wings using Jason Smith’s nine-point system (29 out of 45 if his wife is lame). This is actually a very high score, and the Sabres organization should feel encouraged by the results. Also, while it is not a calculable factor in the nine-point evaluation system, I think that the fact that Jason Smith uses chicken wings as his standard unit of measurement bodes very well for his future with the Buffalo Sabres.

24 Responses to “Jason Smith Evaluates the Sabres”

  1. 1 Heather B. July 3, 2008 at 3:02 pm

    Kate, I literally JUST emailed Mark to say, “I wish I knew what Smith’s nine points were!” I’m so glad you’re on top of this!

  2. 2 Meg July 3, 2008 at 3:04 pm


  3. 3 Meg July 3, 2008 at 3:06 pm

    Also, Jason Smith played in Edmonton for years. By comparison Buffalo is probably an utter oasis of privacy. So it could be worse!

  4. 4 Jimmy K July 3, 2008 at 4:29 pm

    Ha! Stumbled on your blog cause of a post at the WGR website. Awesome stuff. I laughed silently to myself at least twice.

  5. 5 Katebits July 3, 2008 at 4:54 pm

    Heather, I am so glad I was able to provide this valuable service. :P (I love that we both honed in on that weird little part of the article. A nine-point system!)

    Meg, you make a VERY good point about Edmonton. We can’t possibly be as annoying as them.

    Thanks for your super nice comment, Jimmy K! Welcome to The Willful Caboose!

  6. 6 Schnookie July 3, 2008 at 5:03 pm

    Okay, the Devils were PROMISED Smith in JANUARY. It was a DONE DEAL! Everyone said that he was signing with us, that the ink was already dry on his secret contract, and that Philly was phasing him out because of it. And now I hear he’s tailoring his 9-point system (which he probably learned when he was a baby d-man in the Devils’ system back in the Lemaire days. That seems very Lou or Lemaire) to favor Buffalo??? Lou is getting the band back together this summer! I thought that was as clear an indication as any that Smith wanted back in with the Devils! If we got Holik instead of Smith, I’m going to be SOME KIND OF PISSED. (What did we do wrong, Gator? Was it that we dislocated both of your shoulders in one game at the end of the season? You’re not really holding that against us, are you? We didn’t do it on purpose!)

  7. 7 Katebits July 3, 2008 at 6:05 pm

    Listen Schnookie, the Devils can’t have ALL the rugged character guys. Save some for the rest of us, geez!

  8. 8 Steph July 3, 2008 at 9:49 pm

    Gator’s wife Wendy is really cute and I’m certain not lame, and I’m sure she would find Buffalo a spectacular place to live! You’d just better take care of him and his shoulders for me if he lands there okay?

    (Personally Elly and I believe one of his criteria is “Does the city have a plethora of Tim Hortons'” – and you do! Congrats!)

  9. 9 Schnookie July 3, 2008 at 10:05 pm

    I’m not asking for ALL the rugged character guys. I just want the rugged character ex-Devil guys. Is that too much to ask?

  10. 10 Shari July 3, 2008 at 11:55 pm

    (Personally Elly and I believe one of his criteria is “Does the city have a plethora of Tim Hortons’” – and you do! Congrats!)

    And the accesory of a Tim Horton coffee cup a must for some.

  11. 11 Amanda July 4, 2008 at 1:24 am

    Hey Kate – did you play at the Bisons game tonight? If so, tremendous job! I’m so sorry you had to hit through a never-ending baseball game before you got your chance to play. 13 innings, and they still lose. *grumble grumble*

  12. 12 Anne July 4, 2008 at 12:26 pm

    You’d just better take care of him and his shoulders for me if he lands there okay?

    No worries. After Derek Roy injured his shoulder this season they strapped more protective padding on his shoulders than most players have on their entire bodies. Then, feeling all indestructible, Roysie went on a point scoring bonanza. We in Buffalo are all about the sanctity of shoulders.

  13. 13 Pookie July 4, 2008 at 1:04 pm

    HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHHAHAHAHAHA!! Great post, Kate! But… I’m with Schnookie. The man needs to be a Devil.

    1. The team is pretty good (when it tries).
    2. I’m sure Newark has a foxy philharmonic; if it doesn’t, NYC’s not that far away.
    3. With the money he gets, he can buy a foxy house even in the Land of Ridiculously Priced Housing. Or, if he wishes, he can live at stately IPB Manor for free.
    4. He can avoid traffic altogether because the arena is on many major public transportation routes.
    5. There is not an NHL city that affords more anonymity that Jersey. Just ask Brodeur. Or, Gomez. Heh.
    6. OK, Lindy’s got Sutter beat hands down on the yellow hair front. That I cannot deny. But I’m sure Sutter would happily wear a Lindy-style yellow wig every so often to keep Gator happy.
    7. Sure! Like all ex-Devils, she’s probably from there!
    8. This is a no-go. Lou doesn’t do 5 year deals.
    9. Of course not. We’re spoiled (just ask Holik).
    (10. We have no Tim Horton’s.)

  14. 14 elise July 4, 2008 at 2:30 pm

    kate, you are a mad blogging genius.

  15. 15 Jaime July 4, 2008 at 2:43 pm

    This is brilliant! I’m sure once Json Smith reads your blog (a necessity to all) he will see that he could never live anywhere except Buffalo!!

  16. 16 Marie July 4, 2008 at 3:52 pm

    Anyone else ticked that Steve Bernier is gone? I really liked the guy!

  17. 17 Steph July 4, 2008 at 3:54 pm

    Anne – brilliant! I feel much better about leaving Gator and his shoulders in your capable hands!

    Pookie, the lack of Tim Hortons is undoubtedly what drove him out of Philly – you have no hope!

  18. 18 Patty (in Dallas) July 4, 2008 at 4:58 pm

    I really liked him in Edmonton. Seems like a stand-up guy. So the Stars probably aren’t interested.

    Hilarious list, Kate. Kind of makes me want to sign with Buffalo. Especially the traffic part.

  19. 19 MikeP July 4, 2008 at 9:15 pm

    Gator doesn’t dislocate his shoulders. They leap out of the way of his indestructible body.

    Jason Smith doesn’t tolerate pain well. He doesn’t tolerate it at all. He doesn’t have to, because for Jason Smith, pain does not exist.

    Smith’s nickname isn’t because of the football team, like everybody says. He once had a “who can take the biggest bite out of the other guy” with an alligator. Smith’s still skating. Do the math.

    Thank you, I’m here all night.

  20. 20 MikeP July 4, 2008 at 9:28 pm

    er, biggest bite out of the other guy *contest*. Insufficient beer leads to leaving out.

  21. 21 Weapons: Nunchakus July 21, 2008 at 11:39 pm

    Can I ask though – how did you get this picked up and into google news?

    Very impressive that this blog is syndicated through Google and is it something that is just up to Google or you actively created?

    Obviously this is a popular blog with great data so well done on your seo success..

    The baseball greats you should write about next!

  22. 22 Mary December 23, 2009 at 8:20 pm

    This is still funny.

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  1. 1 So, something happened yesterday… « Letters to the NHL Trackback on November 18, 2009 at 1:52 pm

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