EDIT: I wrote this post before the Rangers game which ended just moments ago. The Sabres lost the game in the shootout but they won in our hearts (IT WAS A TIE).
Maybe the Sabres aren’t bad? Maybe they’re… awesome? I have no idea, but I will say this: I’m not sad about that “loss” at all. Maybe my cheerfulness in the face of the shootout loss proves that the conclusion I reach at the end of this post is true. I dunno. It’s all very confusing and fun.
The Sabres are bad. Possibly extremely bad. They might not be as bad as they seem (like it or not, injuries ARE kind of a reasonable excuse), but they’re still waaaaay worse than we ever thought they could possibly be.
I’ve spent the last few days wringing my hands worrying about whether I’m reacting to the Sabres in the “right” way. (I know. I’m the most annoying person in the world.) I like to think of myself as a cheery fan, so it worries me when I veer into genuinely gloomy Sabres territory. The big question is: Should I (CAN I?!) actually root against the Sabres?
(Now look. I know that technically the Sabres still have a mathematical chance at making the playoffs, but I’m not a, “I still believe!!!!” kind of fan. If you are that type of fan, all the power to ya. Me? I’m more of a “Accept it at face value and then make the best of it,” kind of girl. Right now the face value of the Buffalo Sabres looks to be about $1.50.)
The facts say that the Sabres have much better odds of snagging a lottery draft pick than they have of making the playoffs. History says that it’s going to take failure on an undeniable level for there to be a management/coaching change. Flaming out in spectacular fashion really might be the Sabres’ best available option. At the very least, a real flame out is decisive. A season-long flame out says in a loud, clear, impossible-to-ignore voice, “Stop dicking around, Sabres management. Changes MUST be made.”
The trouble is, watching the Sabres flame out is not very fun. Or…is it?
The Habs game last night was fascinating to me. I really enjoyed that game, and yet, at the very end, if the Habs had tied it up, I think I would’ve been fine with it. (It’s hard to say for sure how one might feel in the face of hypothetical suckiness.) I was definitely rooting for the Sabres. I was genuinely happy when the Sabres scored, and I laughed with glee watching the Habs skate around like a bunch of clowns in reaction to the Sabres inexplicable dominance. (Seriously, Habs. You guys made the Sabres look like geniuses last night and that is, well, frankly hilarious.) BUT, the voice in the back of my head saying, “It wouldn’t be so bad if the Habs won this game…” That voice never really went away.
It occurred to me last night after the game that this might actually be a win-win situation for the optimistic fan. If the Sabres win, yay! The Sabres won. Rejoice! If the Sabres lose… yay! (YEAH, I SAID IT!) The Sabres are still on their way to a tasty draft pick, and maybe some of these crummy players and/or crummy GMs and coaches might finally get booted out of here.
Conclusion: WE LITERALLY CAN’T LOSE, YOU GUYS. IT’S ALL GOOD!
Ta-da! Cheerfulness wins again!
(Please now picture me in the triumphant pose of a gymnast who has just stuck the landing in an Olympic competition. Thank you.)