Saturday, February 7, 2009

It's Been a While

I would like to begin this post by apologizing for being a terrible blogger this week; this semester is going to be more intense than even I could have imagined.

There's not much I can really contribute to the conversation about the Sabres right now. They're playing really well. I know they're playing really well. I hope they never stop playing really well.

In all seriousness, I am so pleased with not only the fact that they're winning games but how they're winning those games. Whether it's a blowout like Wednesday or a tight battle like last night, this team has shown up to play in every situation over the last stretch of games.

I know everyone loves to talk about a season's "turning point," but I have to say that this team has been different since that loss to Washington in December. After Goose, Ryan, and the others stated that they were going to hold each other accountable, I've seen a more determined team on the ice every night. Sure, some nights since then haven't been perfect, but I think we can all agree that the thing that matters most, the effort, has been more palpable ever since.

I keep waiting for this to end, for the lazy, uninspired play to start again. I'm anxiously looking at the schedule for games where they could use travel or fatigue as an excuse (yes, I know I'm a masochist). So far, though, the boys haven't taken the bait, coming to work every night - much to my pleasant surprise.

To make up for my six days without posting, I give you six reasons to be really happy with the Sabres right now:

1.) Tim Connolly - I know that Timmy is the hot subject to talk about right now, but I couldn't write a blog about the recent success of this team and not mention him. That goal last night was a thing of beauty, but it's also a thing of regularity when Timmy's in the lineup. This team plays differently with him on the ice. That is why we cannot trade him at the deadline. He makes our team better, and, with the battle to move up in the standings getting more intense every day, we need the best team we can possibly put on the ice. That team only exists with #19 as our center.

2.) Ryan Miller - Have I mentioned how excited I am that we get to keep him for the next five years?

3.) Pat Kaleta - I'm almost as happy as my father to see his man-crush back on the ice. He plays a role on our team that no one else can fill, and I love that guys on the other team know what he's trying to do and still take penalties against him. He's been pretty strong on the PK lately, too.

4.) The Vanek-Connolly-Stafford Line - It's so nice to have a strong #1 scoring line again.

5.) Defense - Spacho's shot finally hit the net. Rivet is bringing the grit and character to the blueline that we got him for. Paetsch looked good out there as a forward yesterday, playing on the strongest line of the night. I've been so impressed with Nate this season; he does what he's asked without whining, and it was nice to see him rewarded with success yesterday.

6.) Paul Gaustad (kind of...) - So I'm extremely depressed about Goose being hurt...again. Indefinitely is a long time. However, many thanks to Amy from SOTC for alerting me to this interview following the Anaheim loss. Ladies, if this doesn't make you smile as a Sabres fan, nothing will:

I don't know about anyone else, but shirtless interviews with Goose just scream journalistic integrity for me. Just keeping it classy over here at M&G.

Tonight, the Sabres take on everyone's favorite team to hate (and, this year, to laugh at), the Ottawa Senators. I just hope Ruutu isn't hungry again...


Ray-Chill said...

The best part about that video? You don't even need the volume up to enjoy it. :D

I can't wait to see all the fighting and eating [if Ruutu is hungry, like you said] and just general craziness that ensues tonight. Enjoy the game! I know I will...

Katie said...

The best part about that video? You don't even need the volume up to enjoy it. :D

So true! He is one good-looking man - even if we won't be seeing him for a while :(

Enjoy the game! I know I will...

Thanks! I plan to; Ottawa games are always the BEST!

Jennifer said...

Oh, you mean he was talking during that video??? I just kept waiting for the camera angle to drop a little lower to get a better view!

Katie said...

I just kept waiting for the camera angle to drop a little lower to get a better view!

It was those gosh-darn microphones in the way of all that lovely Goose-ness. haha