Monday, November 05, 2007

The visitors' section: Buffalo Sabres

Part of blogging is getting to debate and share with your readers and fellow bloggers. Habs bloggers until now, but I thought it was time to reach out to those blogging our rivals.

Sometimes we focus on our own team so much that we forget there are 14 other teams vying for the 8 playoff spots we are (well 7 if Ottawa doesn't slow down and give everyone else a chance). Sometimes that means we lose to a team that's better than we are. Sometimes we lose to a team who wants to win more than we do.

The Buffalo Sabres have had a couple of super seasons and have stumbled thus far. Although i can't say I am completely shocked about their predicament. The city of Buffalo (and Ontario commuters) sure are.

Here's a summary of what David at Die by the Blade had to say about his Sabres so far this year:

Recent form
The Buffalo Sabres have been very inconsistent this season, searching for an identity after losing Chris Drury and Daniel Briere. At times they look like the team we all saw last year, but at other times they seem to struggle. The Sabres are coming off of a 4-2 loss to the Florida Panthers, in which they allowed the Panthers to score three times in five minutes.

The players
The team is led by Derek Roy, Brian Campbell and Tim Connolly (who is returning from a season long head injury). Ryan Miller is still the backbone of the team, although he has not been as consistent as in years past.

The Sabres have also been soft in their own zone through the first 11 games and have relied on minor league defensemen due to injuries to Jaro Spacek, Dmitri Kalinin and newly signed Nolan Pratt.

I agree with David about the consistency issue. But that, as we know, is the bane of every team that doesn't collect 116 points. Welcome back to the pack (at least for a month or two) Sabres fans. As I said in my weekly review, I think we are well matched with Buffalo, and we each play about the same way the others would like to. I think on current form and hopefully a little desperation born out of a Leafs loss, this game should reflect the standings and we should win. And I stand by Spacek and Afinogenov as my Sabres to keep your eyes on.

I think our guest might have the same opinion of his own team's circumstances if you asked. But even if we're being nice to other bloggers - this is a Habs blog afterall.

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