Fresh off their third straight loss at home a few minutes ago, Lindy Ruff said the Sabres are disappointed and frustrated. So are the fans, chief. So is the media, boss. So is everyone who cares about Buffalo sports, guy. This is starting to get ridiculous, so I’ll make my points.
The HSBC Arena seats 18,690 for a hockey game. Today against the Capitals was a sellout, part of the NHL’s “Hockey Day in America”, ending with the Heritage Classic in Canada tonight between Montreal and Calgary (PS: Good call!). By the time there was 10 minutes left in the third, that crowd had significantly thinned out. The Caps had just scored, and everyone made a mass exodus for the doors. Know why? Because the on-ice product wasn’t gonna come back against Alex Ovetchkin and Company, and everyone who attended the game knew that. We’re 0-3-1 in our last 4 home games. That’s pitiful. And everyone knows it.
This game reminds me of one of the first games of the season at home against New Jersey (10/13), when Kovalchuk scored in OT to beat us 1-0. There were a few decent chances, but we were generally dominated and couldn’t get the puck past Brodieur. Today, we got one goal, a laser from Jason Pominville, only our second in our last 3 games. Why can’t we win at home? Who knows. Maybe the pre-game meals are bad and the first change Terry Pegula needs to make is to fire the chefs. Maybe our lack of leadership is bad, and we need to rip the “C” from Healthy Scratch Rivet and plop it on Steve Montador or someone who deserves it. Maybe we just don’t have enough offensive power to keep up with the Philadelphias’, Tampa Bays’, and Bostons’ of the Eastern Conference. In any event, it’s depressing.
There are currently 24 games left on our schedule, and half that number left at home. It’s time for that do or die, win or go home, playoff attitude to start coming out of this team. Because if they don’t start putting the puck past opposing netminders quickly and at a higher clip than two every three games, they’ll be watching from their homes in Fargo, ND, Angola, NY, or Houston, TX, depending on your favorite player. It’s time for someone to step up and kick them in the rear and get them going.
*Psst, Darcy Regier: there are 8 days left before the trade deadline…just so you know.