Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Sabres Fans Atwitter Over Rumor

A few weeks ago I stumbled across a thread on a message board where people were discussing rumors about the Sabres being sold to a man named Terry Pegula. Then last night on Twitter, TBN writer Mike Harrington sent out a coy tweet telling Sabres fans to stay tuned for an exciting story that would be posted today. And here we are.

I feel like ever since Golisano bought the team there have been various rumors that have sparked about him selling the team, but this one seems to have generated a lot more interest with the more credible sources out there, such as The Hockey News and TSN. Obviously right now the Sabres are downplaying the rumor, which is to be expected considering the rumor essentially broke today.

Personally, I think there is a lot truth behind Pegula having a serious interest in buying the team, but I am wary about all the "information" that has come about that has to do with the letter of intent and when all of this will be official. In this day and age with Twitter, blogs, and message boards, it's so easy for people to get ahold of certain things and run away with it. Hell, if Matthew Barnaby's tweet about Roy punching Tim Connolly at Catwalk for Charity can generate a buzz among the hockey world, then we ought to be a little cautious when people start reporting details about all this.

Still, it's fun for fans to speculate. He's filthy rich, his wife is an avid Sabres fan, and he has strong ties to hockey. Which all bodes well for Sabres fans. I've always respected that Tom Golisano said that he is open to selling the team as long as the owner will keep the team in Buffalo. It's certainly going to be interesting and a lot of fun to see how all of this unfolds.

Moving onto the team, with the Sabres being off until Friday, I was going to get around to putting up a post describing my current feelings towards the season so far. Which could be summed up in one word basically: uncertain. I wanted to make a big post about my feelings and where to go from here, but with all this talk about the team being sold, that doesn't seem very interesting now, does it?

Monday, November 22, 2010

Catwalk for Charity V Recap

SO. This year was their 5th year and it was 80s themed and everyone was pretty into it. This year seemed to be a lot more crowded than last year, I don't know if they sold more tickets than year's past or something but it just felt more crowded. It was a lot harder to talk to Ryan because there were a lot of people and media that wanted to talk to him, plus he was hanging out with his lady friend the entire night, but I made sure to shake his hand and congratulate him on last year with the Olympics and him winning the Vezina. I made sure to get a picture with him because it's like a ~yearly tradition~ for me to get a picture haha.

I also got a picture with Ryan's awesome younger brother Bryce and his dad Dean. I volunteered with them over the summer when they needed help at an event selling Steadfast memorabilia so it was nice seeing them again. Dean is HILARIOUS...which I'm sure you will be able to tell from the picture of us haha.

Bryce and me

Dean and I

When it was time for the auction Ryan came onstage in a Tommy Lee/Motley Crue outfit which was hilarious for everyone to see... Some of the auction items were traveling with the team to a road game, having Ryan Miller come over to your house for dinner, a replica of his Olympic mask, and an adorable bb toy poodle.

Ryan was also surprised with a custom made guitar inspired from his Olympic mask, which was painted by the same man who paints his masks, Ray Bishop.

American hero

But the real fun starts when the players strut their stuff on the catwalk.

Rick Jeanneret and Harry Neale, as Wayne and Garth!

Dean strutting his stuff.

The most hilarious part of the catwalk was when Tyler Myers and Tyler Ennis were dressed as Danny DeVito and Arnold Schwarzenegger from the movie Twins and Myers was carrying Ennis on his back!

Blurry pic, but you get the idea.

Then at the end of the fashion show the players come out in their normal clothes, which made me kind of sad to see Ryan changed out of his Tommy Lee outfit, because I would have loved to have gotten a picture with him in his costume. Oh well, there will be plenty of other opportunities to get a picture with Ryan dressed as a member of Motley Crue...

So after the fashion show a band comes onstage to perform and the party sort of winds down from there. My friend Steph and I hung out for a little bit and I saw Ryan on my way out and I thanked him and congratulated him on another successful Catwalk and I told him how much fun I had and I said that I hoped that his ~lower body~ would feel better soon. All in all it was another fun night and there was a lot of money raised for a wonderful cause at the same time. Catwalk for Charity is definitely the party of the year in Buffalo, after attending them year in and year out, I can say that the night is still full of surprises and it's always a great time. You never know what's in store when you go to Catwalk, but you always know that you will have a great time and there will be a lot of money raised to support Ryan's Steadfast Foundation!

You can see a lot more pics I took over on my Flickr page.

Monday, November 15, 2010

Exciting News!

Hey everyone! I have some exciting news that I want to share with you. I got an internship with the Sabres to work as a Media intern for the IIHF U20 World Junior Championships! I will be writing feature stories on news and events that will be going on in the area pertaining to the tournament and may also be doing game reports and recaps that will be posted on the World Junior's official website.

I was originally hired as PR intern but a few days ago I was contacted about the Media internship and was asked to come in and interview for the position if I was interested.

I'm extremely excited about this opportunity and I can't wait for it to begin. It's going to be a wonderful experience and it's going to be interesting to cover such a big event.

Anyways, just wanted to give you guys a heads up. I've been pretty tight-lipped about it but I decided that it was time to share the news!

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Forty: The Sabres in the NHL

So right now everyone is feeling prettaayyy, prettaaayy, prettaaaayyy good now that we have FINALLY seen our two sports teams win at home! And we're all still reminiscing over Vanek's SIQ GOAL. Sometimes sports is all about living in the moment, and right now, things just feel good. So if you're in the mood to reminisce a little more, head over to the Albright-Knox art gallery for the Sabres exhibit.

That's what I did today with a few friends. And it was really awesome. I could have easily spent hours in there just looking at all the great photos that were taken over 40 years. Accompanying the great pictures were video compilations of various things. Highlight reels focused on the goalies, the fights, and the fans. Lindy and Ryan Miller were the commentators in the goalie video where they talked about the great goalies over the years, mostly focused on Dominik Hasek of course. Then Rob Ray, Matthew Barnaby, and Brad May were the main commentators in the fights compilation. It was fun to weave through the exhibit looking at all the pictures while hearing classic Rick Jeanneret calls, fans cheering, and the goal horn that were coming from the videos.

The coolest part of the exhibit was the NHL in 360ยบ feature that they had. You went in a room that had a huge projection on the wall where you got to see a Sabres game through the perspective of the players. You got to see what it's like to be sitting on the bench during the action and having Lindy bark orders in your ear. You got to see what the game looks like in Ryan Miller's perspective, when the action is right by the net or when he is making a save. You got to see it through the skater's eyes, and you got to see what it's like to change on the fly. It was all really awesome. I could have sat in that room alone for a few hours just to take it all in.

The exhibit runs until January 9th so you still have plenty of time to see the exhibit, I'm sure I will be there a few more times before it ends. The Cup and other trophies will also be at the art gallery from January 2nd-5th to go along with the World Juniors. I've seen the Cup when it was at the art gallery before, and I'd highly recommend going... You get to see it up close and touch it just like you would able to at the Hockey Hall of Fame. Other trophies like the Vezina Trophy will also be there too, which will be especially cool to see now that our very own Ryan Miller is now a proud winner of the award.

Here are some pictures I took at the exhibit...

My friend Saletha getting cozy with Ryan Miller.

Our coach.

Great shots of the fans in the stands over the years.

I just love this one!

You can see more pictures I took at the exhibit right here.

Saturday, November 13, 2010

For Thomas Vanek:

^ click

Thank you giving the Sabres their first home win. Sweet, sweet victory!


Thursday, November 11, 2010

Catwalk Preview!

The Sabres have had their ups and downs so far this season, but they put out better efforts in their last road trip which resulted in some wins. There was a great come-from-behind shootout victory against the Leafs, which was especially sweet because it was against the Leafs. Jhonas Enroth also picked up his first NHL victory. Then the Sabres also came from behind in New Jersey, and with the help of Ilya Kovalchuk, the Sabres won their second straight in another shootout and Lindy Ruff got to see a victory in his 1,000th game coaching the Sabres.

Unfortunately the Sabres fell short in New York against the Rangers where I thought they played a real solid game and Enroth came up with some big saves. The proponents are all there, but the Sabres just need to play a smarter game. And Vanek needs to make an appointment with a sports psychologist. All was not completely lost, as the Sabres did pick up a point which is better than nothing I suppose. Just have to keep building off the positives at this point.

So Sabres fans probably all feel a bit of mixed emotions right now, at least we can focus on something that is uplifting and exciting... Catwalk for Charity is next Sunday! It always creeps up on me. I look forward to it all year, buy my tickets as soon as they go onsale, and then all of a sudden it's right around the corner. I can't wait to see all the Sabres and everyone else dressed up in their 80s glam outfits and I can't wait to take a bunch of pictures and eat good food and drink awesome drinks and raise a lot of money for The Steadfast Foundation.

I was browsing on Steadfast's website today, and I saw a new video that was posted showing what Ryan's foundation does for all the young patients at Roswell. Be sure to watch it so you know where all the money that is raised at Catwalk for Charity goes to!

I also saw that they posted all of the live auction items that will be auctioned off this year... These are always fun to look at. I'm excited to see that the actor that played Scut Farkus (Zack Ward) in A Christmas Story will be in attendance at Catwalk this year. Watching A Christmas Story on Christmas Eve and on Christmas is sort of family tradition. I remember watching it at my grandparents' house on Christmas Eve for as long as I can remember. And I still laugh at it as if I'm watching it for the first time! It's a classic. So it'll be fun to see Scut Farkus in the flesh. There are tons of other fun auction items up for grabs this year... The Buffalo Sabres road trip where two fans get to travel with the team to a road game would be awesome.

But the best auction item is obviously the dinner at your house with Ryan Miller. Now THAT would be sick. Imagine texting your friends, "Oh sorry, I can't go out tonight...Ryan Miller is coming over for dinner." No big deal or anything. Although it would be kind of stressful to cook up a meal for the occasion (although it does say in the description that he's a fan of chicken parm). I would imagine that if he came to my house I would probably act like a little kid and give him a tour. "And THIS is where I watch TV." "THIS is MY desk." "THIS is MY giant poster I have of you hanging up in my bedroom." "And THESE are all MY Ryan Miller jerseys!" Ahh, yes. Who knows, if you get enough alcohol in me, maybe I will be the lucky one to have Ryan Miller as my guest! Dare to dream...

Anywaysss....if you're going to Catwalk and you see me make sure you say hi! And if you're not going, I will post my annual recap of the event along with a bunch of photos as always.

Friday, November 5, 2010

Buffalo: This Place Matters

So with the Bills and the Sabres both in dead last in their respective leagues, things aren't going so well in the big, bad Buff... We're all feeling a mixture of emotions that include confusion, anger, disappointment, and sadness when it comes to our sports teams. We're not sure when things are going to turn around. But things aren't all that bad, and there are reasons to be proud and optimistic. Check out this video that was presented by the Buffalo Niagara Convention & Visitors Bureau and Paget Films. It highlights the features of our city and they really did a beautiful job. Who knows what's going to happen with the Sabres game tonight, but this video will be sure to cheer you up:

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Rally to Restore Sanity and/or Fear

If you're friends with me on Facebook or follow me on Twitter, then a few of you might have been aware that this past weekend I flew down to DC to attend Jon Stewart's/Stephen Colbert's Rally to Restore Sanity and/or Fear. I don't want mix my political views on my Sabres blog (but really, you should go out and vote today), but I know a few of you wanted a recap about my experience, so at the risk of me maybe getting a little "too political" for some people's liking, here it is...

My mom and I flew down to Baltimore on Friday morning and arrived to DC via train around 11:30 am. I have been to DC twice before, and my mom lived there for a few years before she was married with kids, so we decided that we weren't going to spend too much time doing any sight seeing. Both times I was in DC that's what I did, but other than that I wasn't very familiar with the area. I wanted my mom to show me around the places that she used to go when she lived there, so that's what we did. We decided that we should check out where the rally was going to be so we could scope out the area and figure out what the best way to get there would be and where would be the best subway stop to get off at.

Everything was set up already and we were able to walk right up to the stage and there were a few other people hanging around the area checking everything out. My mom and I decided to get a picture of us by the stage because we knew that tomorrow was going to be crazy and we probably wouldn't get another chance to be so close to the stage.

After we checked out the stage, we grabbed something to eat and then headed up to Georgetown. Georgetown is gorgeous! There are many restaurants and high end shops and there are so many beautiful townhouses that have been around for hundreds of years. This was my favorite place to take pictures. I couldn't get over how beautiful the townhouses were and how posh I would feel to live in one of them. My mom and I went to the clothing store Anthropologie which was a lot of fun because we don't have an Anthropologie around here but I get their catalogue and it's always fun looking at their beautiful clothes.

Townhouses on Potomac ave in Georgetown

Clothing store on Potomac


After we spent some time in Georgetown, my mom wanted to take me to a restaurant called The Fish Market in Old Town (Alexandria, VA) that she used to eat at when she lived there. Old Town also had the swanky, high end feel like Georgetown, but it also had a more charming, quaint feel to it as well. I liked that it was so close to water (the Potomac River) and it was a real enjoyable walk to the restaurant. My favorite food is probably seafood and The Fish Market definitely did not dissapoint. My mom and I got peel-n-eat shrimp which were delicious.

Walking into the restaurant, I noticed there was a sports bar called Bugsy's. I did a little bit of research before my trip to see what bars in the area would have the Sabres game on and Bugsy's was one of the places I found in my search. At the time I didn't even realize it was right next to The Fish Market, so it was a nice surprise when I walked up and saw it was right there. Bugsy's is owned by a man named Bryan "Bugsy" Watson who is a former NHL player who won a Cup in Montreal. He was a real nice guy and he walked around to make sure that everyone was enjoying themselves. He also bought my mom and I a few drinks which was real nice. I knew I was in the right place when I saw old pictures of Bugsy back in his playing days. There was also a guy wearing a Sabres jersey and a hat waiting for the game to start. Later on a guy came in wearing a Miller USA jersey. There were a few people in there who were former Buffalonians so it was nice talking to them...the bartender was also from Buffalo. Even though the Sabres lost, I still had a good time talking with everyone and watching the game with everyone. If you happen to be in the DC area when the Sabres are playing, this is a perfect place to watch the game.

The next morning, my mom and I woke up at 7 am and we were planning on heading to DC by 8:30. The rally started at noon, but there was a pre-show at 10. We knew that there was going to be a huge turnout, so we wanted to get there as early as possible. When we arrived at the train station around 8:30, we discovered that trains to DC were sold out until 12:30. We quickly got a few other people to split a cab with us to take to DC which cost us around $20 bucks a person. Our cab driver was awesome! DC was a mess with a ton of traffic and roads closed because of the rally, but he was able to drop us off right by the mall right where the rally was held. I am very grateful for that because later I found out that many people got stuck in the subways due to the abundance of people riding them to the rally and they didn't get there much later. It was a blessing in disguise that the train tickets were sold out by the time we got there because we probably would have been among the people who were stuck in the subways if we had gotten on the train. A cab driver told me that some of the lines at the stations were so long that they streched up above ground and wrapped around the block. Yikes...talk about an uncomfortable train ride! I also heard that many people got stuck in Baltimore due to the trains being sold out and a lot of cab drivers refused to drive people to DC because of the traffic. So we really lucked out.

I could feel the energy as soon as I stepped out of the taxi and started walking towards the rally. Everyone was very excited and there were hilarious signs all around... The closer to the rally the more crowded it got. There were people in costume, photographers, and reporters all over the place. I even saw a few people wearing Miller USA jerseys! I was disappointed in myself for not thinking of wearing mine... It would have been a perfect way to be patriotic while showing off my Ryan Miller/Buffalo pride all at the same time. My mom and I saw the ~VIP section~ and like "jedi masters", as some guy referred to us as, we snuck in haha. We were really close to the stage! It was really cool. We were right next to the "real" VIP section where the press and others were watching. It was cool seeing those people walk in. I saw many people from the Daily Show and Arianna Huffington which was neat. Here are some funny signs that I saw at the rally...there are a bunch of hilarious ones that you can view here.

Since we were so close to the stage, it was hard for us to really grasp on how many people were in attendance, but from the loud cheers that echoed off in the distance and seeing countless people endlessly pour in, we could tell that there were a lot. The rally started off with The Roots peforming and then John Legend joined them. They were great and it got everyone pumped up. The whole rally was aired live on Comedy Central, so I'm not sure how many of you watched, but I'm not going to give a total play-by-play rundown of the rally just incase. My favorite parts of the rally was Guido Sarducci's benediction. What can I say? He's just hilarious and he provided some great humor. But my favorite part was seeing CAT STEVENS! I am a HUGE Cat Stevens fan and I was both surprised and ecstatic when Jon Stewart introduced him. It was hilarious when Colbert interrupted him playing Peace Train and then had Ozzy Osbourne come onstage to perform Crazy Train. I was almost in tears when Ozzy Osbourne and Cat Stevens were battling onstage trying to peform their respective songs. I think it was the highlight of the rally. The only complaint I have is that I wish Cat Stevens could have performed more songs (or at least finish Peace Train).

Me and some patriotic dudes

Uncle Sam

Marilyn even made it out to the rally!

The Roots

Cat Stevens!

Colbert & Stewart

I took a bunch more pictures...you can view the rest here and if you want to see the rest of the pictures I took around DC, you can view them here.

All in all, it was a great event and in the end my mom and I were so glad that we decided to take the trip. I'm glad that the rally was held by two comedians, it made it more welcoming for people from all over the political spectrum to attend. It wasn't about what your political affiliation was, it was about people wanting to finally feel like they can have a voice in the direction they want the country to head without being too extreme about certain issues. I think in the world of politics as of late have just gotten so polarizing and black and white, and I think that most of the most reasonable and knowledgeable people in this country have felt shut out. People have been turned off by the constant bickering and mud slinging and the extremeness of it all. It's not surprising that a lot of people have become jaded by politics, but it's also disappointing because I think that as citizens we should all try to be more informed about what's going on and try to be a little more involved...we all live in this country for better or for worse, and we all have some sort of duty to ourselves to want to be apart of it. I think that this is what this rally was all about... People are sick and tired of the complete opposite ends of the political and social spectrums getting all the media attention, when there are so many of us in the "middle" who want a voice too. The point of the rally is in its title...to restore sanity. It was really inspiring and assuring to be around so many people who feel the same way. The rally was a fun, light-hearted way for us to show our pride and to say that we have a voice too.

After the rally, my mom and I decided to head out of downtown DC because it was completely mobbed, so after walking a few blocks we found a cab and headed back to Georgetown for dinner. After dinner I wanted to check out another bar that I found in my research that played the Sabres games. I ended up at Kelly's Irish Times on Capitol Hill. When I walked in I wasn't sure I was in the right place because the entire bar was decorated with police patches, but tucked away behind the bar surrounded by all the police memorabilia, I saw a Ryan Miller picture with the saying "Miller Saves" on it so I knew I was where I was supposed to be! I met a guy who went to UB and I also talked to a guy from Boston who said that the Sabres are his 2nd favorite team (behind the Bruins). I also talked to some Caps season ticket holders who were kind enough to buy me a shot of tequila while I was watching that debacle of a game.... Thanks Navi, wherever you are!

Sign I saw at the bar. I like that there is an Orchard Park Fire Co. hat next to Ryan's picture!

After my mom and I made it back to Baltimore we immediately went to bed after our exhausting weekend. Our flight from Baltimore left around 12:30. Being in the airport on Halloween was a lot of fun because a lot of people were in costume. It was funny seeing some girls in their skimpy little costumes in line at security, since security is supposed to be such a no nonsense, serious zone. I even saw two people dressed up as the Spartan cheerleaders from SNL and they did a routine at their gate. We made it back to Buffalo in time for me to carve pumpkins, pass out candy to trick-or-treaters, and get in my costume (I was a she wolf, ah-wooo!) and go out with my friends.

My costume!

It was a crazy weekend but it was so nice to get away for a bit and do something like that. I'm glad that I can say that I was there!