Archives for September 2004

NHL slate starts shrinking

"The team's Web site,, has already stricken the games from its schedule. Buffalo's season opener is now listed as Oct. 24 at Phoenix, but that game will be canceled Friday. The Oct. 26 game at St. Louis will be canceled Sunday. And so on and so on.'

In the Locker Room with Danny Gare

“We had a few of them back then. I would have to say Rick Martin though. Richard always had a joke to go along with every story that he told. He always seemed to keep the locker room loose. I believe that was just his way of diffusing the tension before big games.”

Beyond the Boards… Thomas Vanek

It was very tough because I didn’t know any English. My family stayed back in Austria and all of my friends were back there. I can definitely say that it was really difficult the first couple of months. In the end, I had a great host family and made some good friends that I still keep in contact with. But the first couple of months were some of the hardest of my life.

Countdown to the HockeyFest

New to the tournament this year will be an All-Star street hockey grudge match between WGR-550 and the Sabres’ Alumni. Danny Gare, Rob Ray, Larry Playfair and other alumni will look to continue the Sabres’ domination of WGR-550, who was defeated 2-1 in the first meeting between the two organizations at the Draft Party earlier in the summer.

Zhitnik in limbo; no league or team to call his own

'As for the labor dispute, Zhitnik declined to take sides, instead saying that owners and players need to find a compromise. ''It's tough to say who's totally right, who's totally wrong. I think each side has to give up a little bit,'' Zhitnik said. ''It could be a long time, it could be a couple of months. The people who are negotiating have to work harder.'''

Players look for ice time

'Contracts signed before Thursday can be guaranteed only after the lockout ends, so any serious injury suffered before then could jeopardize future earnings. The NHL also won't be responsible for any medical bills incurred during the work stoppage. That's a major reason why Sabres winger Miroslav Satan would rather not play at all during the lockout.'

NHL needs to draw up a reality check

'The Sabres stunk last season, most of it anyway, and their payroll's already gone up $5 million. This is fair?'

Roy welcomes his opportunity as an Amerk

'"At the start of the summer I was kind of bummed out that there wasn't going to be a season. You work hard your whole life to make it to the NHL and you finally make it, and then there isn't a season. But this will be good. I can build up some confidence, like I did last year. We're going to have a good team, this is going to be my team and I can't think about anything else."'

Peca sat out once before, ready do it again

'Sabres defenseman Jay McKee said he plans to join a barnstorming league made up of NHL players scheduled to play across Canada. '

Players React to Lockout

'Goalkeeper Marty Biron said, "There's so many ins and outs in this whole collective bargaining agreement thing that haven't even been talked about. Right now, it's salary cap. But once the salary cap issue gets to be pushed away, then it's going to be free agency, and waivers, and entry-league guys, so it's going to be tough, and there's a lot of things that need to be taken care of."'

Statement from Sabres Owner B. Thomas Golisano

'" This new economic system is the only way the Buffalo Sabres will survive and be competitive in the years to come. I apologize to everyone who is affected by this unfortunate situation. I am confident the Sabres and the NHL will work through this problem and flourish in the future."'

Peters o 'I just want to play hockey'

'“I signed that new deal Monday and now I’m wondering if I’ll ever see one penny of it,” Peters said Wednesday afternoon as news filtered out that the NHL board of governors had given unanimous support to a player lockout. “The way they’re talking, there seems to be no end to this thing."'

Lockout stalls NHL season

A quick look at the Sabres' financial position shows that a prolonged lockout would not hurt the team's bottom line much this season – if at all. Last season, the team lost $8.2 million, the difference between $50.9 million in revenues and $59.1 million in expenses, team officials say. If the lockout lasts all season, the Sabres' revenues basically would disappear, but so would most of the team's expenses. The club would be expected to run a bare-bones, slimmed-down operation if there is no season.'

Sabres send Miller, 11 others to Amerks

'Bartovic and Milley weren't sent down because, as veterans with more than three seasons of pro experience, they are subject to waivers. Instead, they very likely will sign American Hockey League contracts with the Amerks, making them eligible to play during the lockout. The same is expected to be done with veteran forwards Chris Taylor and Jason Botterill and defensemen Todd Rohloff, Brandon Smith, David Cullen, Janik and Steve Lingren.'

Sabres fans disheartened by NHL lockout

'The lockout will not affect the newly formed Sabres Center Ice Club, made up of a group of local businesses to help the franchise rebuild its corporate base. ''We didn't want to sit around and wait for the lockout to end and the teams to return to the ice to start this process,'' co-chairman Bill Collins said. ''Our goal and mission is to support the Sabres and help build the season-ticket base so we can ensure the Sabres will be a viable franchise here for generations to come. To me, this is a blip on the radar screen.'''