Archive for the 'Dmitri Kalinin' Category

Tree, Petey, and T.V.

(This post is a part of a series entitled “Kate’s Favorite Sabre Competition” in which I am choosing my 2007/08 favorite Sabre by process of elimination. Each and every Sabre is a hero, but in the end, there can be only one favorite.)


Before I delve too deeply into the third round of Favorite Sabre cuts, I have something to say: I’ve been feeling quite guilty about my early dismissal of the delightful Jochen Hecht. In retrospect, he deserved better, and I wish that I had kept him around for a few more rounds. But what’s done, is done. I don’t think Yo-Yo was going to go the distance anyway, so all his early exit means is a few extra days on the golf course, right? I don’t want to lead him on, only to disappoint him later when he is more emotionally invested. Jochen seems like he might take rejection pretty hard, and I hope he knows I was just looking out for his best interests. And again, just because I haven’t chosen him now, doesn’t mean he won’t become my Favorite Sabre the second the season begins. Let’s not forget, this competition is utter bullshit.

So without further ado,

In the third round I present to you a trio of men for whom I have feelings that are quite out of step with the average Buffalonian. Let’s meet them now….

Dmitri Kalinin #45

Oh, poor Dmitri Kalinin! When people around Buffalo aren’t bitching ruthlessly about his rotten defensive prowess, they are speculating on the fragile state of his psyche. Sweet, sweet Dmitri is prone to devastating lapses of confidence that effect every aspect of his play….or at least that’s what they say on AM 550; and this is the problem as I see it for Dmitri Kalinin. I mean, honestly, can life get more undignified than when Schopp and the Bulldog are speculating about your mental health?

Poor, baby.

I am a professional violist. Playing music for a living certainly isn’t as stressful as playing hockey, but I can relate on some level to buckling under the pressure to perform. I genuinely feel bad for this poor guy. Here he is, clearly struggling, and the whole town is angry and disappointed, and he’s letting everyone down, and the more he tries, the worse it gets, and it’s all just a vicious cycle.

Sadly, a desire to mother Dmitri really doesn’t translate well into holding him up on a pedestal as my Favorite Sabre, so I have no choice but to eliminate him from the competition. I am cutting him from the competition, but I do so with tremendous love and tenderness in my heart. Dmitri, just because you’re not my Favorite Sabre, doesn’t mean you aren’t a great guy. Seriously. If you ever need to talk, you know where to find me. I’m here for you, buddy.

Andrew Peters #76

Petey’s job, as far as I can tell, is to punch people. In regular life, he would be called an “asshole”, but in hockey, he is called an “enforcer”. Accepting the idea that fighting is a genuine part of the game was one of the most startling tasks for me as a beginning hockey fan. I am the child of Minnesota hippies. We do not punch. We talk it out. Discovering that I have a taste for hot guys punching each other has been….borderline alarming, to be honest.

The thing I like about Andrew Peters is he really doesn’t seem like a tough guy. He actually seems like a little bit of a clown….a cocky clown, but still, a harmless goofball at heart. People in Buffalo LOVE to complain about how much he sucks at skating, and I’m sure he does, but if he sucks so bad, why are the Sabres keeping him around? It would seem that they are keeping him around because everybody in the organization really likes him……and that makes me like him a little too. I think that instead of punching, Petey’s primary role is to be a good teammate and to keep things light in the locker room. I could be way off base with this, but I think Andrew Peters might be a pretty decent guy.

All that said, Kate’s Favorite Player can NOT be a sucky enforcer.

Andrew Peters, you are out. Auf Wiedershen!

Thomas Vanek #26

I really thought that once I wrote a letter explaining my anger, I would be able to forgive Thomas Vanek for his recent slutty behavior. Well, it turns out I’m just not ready. I am certain that once the season begins and TV gets an opportunity to earn his contract, he will find a way back into my good graces, but for now, he is going to have to live with the fact that he is being cut from the Favorite Sabre Competition in the same round as Dmitri Kalinin and Andrew Peters.

We reap what we sow, Thomas. (Oh, and congratulations on the birth of your son.)

Round three is complete! The competition is heating up as we get closer and closer to the start of hockey season. Stay tuned to learn who’s dreams will be dashed, and who will ultimately be crowned: KATE’S FAVORITE SABRE!!!!

Jaro, Al, and T-Bone

(This post is a part of a series entitled “Kate’s Favorite Sabre Competition” in which I am choosing my 2007/08 favorite Sabre by process of elimination. Each and every Sabre is a hero, but in the end, there can be only one favorite.)


There has been an incredible response to my request for Favorite Sabre candidates. Buffalo is a city full of rabid hockey fans, and I’ll admit, I was somewhat concerned that the boys would not feel the need to clamor for my affection. Luckily, my loyal scribe, Tim Laudner (Original Favorite Player) wrote the Sabres an especially poignant letter, and his impassioned plea seems to have struck a chord with the young team. I have in fact, received applications from all of the Sabres except for two: Ryan Miller and Dmitri Kalinin. I suspect Ryan is playing hard to get, and Dimitri, well….the poor dear is dreadfully shy. Hopefully, with gentle coaxing from his life coaches, he can overcome his crippling fear, and eventually apply for the job.

Tim and I have been hard at work sifting through the Sabres resumes and headshots. We are at a severe disadvantage because between us, we still know very little about hockey. Tim is a former Minnesota Twins baseball player, and I am a very new hockey fan. With so little experience to draw from, we have found ourselves somewhat befuddled by the daunting task of choosing a new Favorite Sabre.

In order to lubricate this process, I have decided that the best approach is to start with the easiest players to eliminate. While I appreciate each Sabre’s contribution on the ice, not every man can be my favorite, and there are several players who can be immediately removed from further consideration. I present three such men now.

Jaroslav Spacek #6

I may not be the most seasoned fan, but I do have eyes and ears. My ears have told me that everyone in Buffalo loves to hate Jaroslav Spacek. My eyes have told me…well, let’s just say he is not doing himself any favors with that anvil-shaped head. It seems Jaro has failed expectations on nearly every level as a Sabre. He played very well as a member of the Edmonton Oilers, so I have not given up on him entirely, but his current role as “fan punching bag” makes him an unlikely candidate for “Kate’s Favorite Sabre”. It’s entirely possible that someday I will opt to champion an unlikely favorite, but in my very first year as a fan, I can’t go out on a limb for a guy like Jaroslav Spacek. I wish him nothing but the best this coming season, and as always, my heart remains open to each and every Sabre.

Ales Kotalik #12

Pookie once suggested that Ales Kotalik looks like he should be wearing a large red sash, and a formal jacket adorned with military medals. I have to say, I agree. Al may be a great guy, but until I need a date to an 18th century Viennese ball, he and I will have to remain “just friends”. I do appreciate his funny little beard and the jaunty gleam in his eye, so while he is not my Favorite Sabre, I will think of Ales with great affection.

Jocelyn Thibault #TBA

Okay, Jocelyn Thibault turned out to be a real shocker. I put him on this list without thinking twice because I figured that his newness, combined with the name “Jocelyn”, combined with his role as a back-up goaltender would all add up to certain disqualification from the competition. Imagine my surprise when I went to the Sabres website and found this guy! He’s delightful! So cute! Not only is he cute, but he’s 32, and I appreciate having a new, age-appropriate crush on our fresh-faced Sabres team. Plus, his name (which I initially foresaw as a problem) lends itself extremely well to the nickname “T-Bone”. (I think his last name is pronounced TEE-Bogh.) T-Bone is a stellar nickname. All-in-all, Jocelyn is off to a great start with me. While I still feel it’s unwise to choose a back-up goaltender for the important role of Favorite Sabre, Jocelyn Thibault may very well end up with the title of “Favorite Sabre To Watch Joshing Around On the Bench.” We’ll see.

So there you have it; the first round of cuts is complete. The role of Kate’s Favorite Sabre is still up for grabs, and you can assume that Tim and I will be hard at work in the coming weeks, weighing and re-weighing each young man’s qualifications. As always, I appreciate any and all contributions from my readers, so please feel free to chime in in support of your favorite Sabre.

…A Blog About the Buffalo Sabres

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