Hey gang, Commander here. I decided to forego a “season preview” of sorts for the Sabres based on what we’ve seen already. I don’t think anyone hasn’t figured out that they’re going to be fucking terrible.
I’m pretty sure that I couldn’t log on, type up “The DEEG 13-14 Sabres Preview” and just post “They fucking blowwwwwww” in 36pt font, because that covers things pretty nicely. (At least not yet, give me a few more months and some job security and that might be funny).
Is it fair to demand better from the Sabres?? I’d say absolutely. But I’m not talking on ice product. Let’s face it, we’re not a storied franchise like the Bruins or the Blackhawks. There’s no real history of success to draw from here. Your best hope for the on ice thing to work out is these kids ending up pretty good, a sprinkling of vets when they are good and one or two of them to be great. It’s the same recipe that created 05-07. Right now you’re in like 2003, this is going to go on for a few years and that’s fine. They flat out told everyone it’s the plan. Later on in the year we’ll talk about how it’s going, but for right now we need to take a look at the bigger problems in Sabreland.
Face it, the Pegula Era came with a lot of hope and promise and we all had the warm fuzzies that things were going to be FUCKIN RAD from now on.
We’re so far away from there that I’ve seen people wondering what Larry Quinn is up to.
So hey there! I learned this morning that I’ve “graduated” from my trial period and will soon be getting my name on the little sidebar thing over there full time. I’d like to thank everyone for the opportunity, and I hope to do them proud until I graduate to Deadspin or Trending Buffalo!
I had no plans to write anything until at least the NHL Draft because I heard once you get a full time gig here, you don’t actually have to write, you just sorta hang out and make fun of people on Twitter. But then Bucky Gleason decided to regurgitate his annual GM For A Day column and I couldn’t resist busting into the old blogger standby and giving it the Fire Joe Morgan treatment. I also want you to know that after doing this, I clearly hate myself and I’m apologizing in advance for making you read part of a Bucky Gleason article.
Let's get on with it.
Ralph Wilson says, "Let the hate flow throuuuuuuuuuuugh you!"
The Scizz w/ special guest Criminally Vu1ga CONSTIPATED
The Hate List. What a charming idea. A week after my colleague, the Defenseman, wrote an absolutely amazing, heart-wrenching post in which he calls out some of us complainers in the sports world, here I am being a negative Nancy, throwing the warm and fuzzies aside for some good old fashioned haaaaaaaaterade. But I have not come alone! Joining me is the ever so evil, yet brilliant Criminally Vu1gar from his blog of the same name
and Black and Blue and Gold
. This brainchild was created when the two of us, as usual, were making fun of people on twitter and realized we both have something in common: hating random members of the sports world for no "legit" reason whatsoever. After a few DM’s (and BM’s, am I right?), the Hate List was created. Now bask in our awfulness as we attempt to come to terms with why we dislike so many sports personalities. My picks are in blue
, while C.V.’s are in red
. (because they didn’t have any rainbow fonts. ZING!)
I hate Mark Martin. And I know, that statement is going to get me a ton of shit from NASCAR fans, mostly the anti-Earnhardt (read: anti-talent) crowd. Fuck you, I’m sick of your bullshit and your excuses and your inane hatred of awesome drivers with awesome mustaches. THAT justifies rooting for a driver that just lacks the killer instinct to win a championship. And seriously, when does Mark “2nd place” Martin get inserted into the conversation with Bill Buckner, Scott Norwood, and Lindy Ruff? Can we dust off the choker label already?
Dustin PennerFirst off, this bitch has two cups. Dustin Penner has TWO cups. After not even getting drafted and then impressing in the minors, Penner latched onto the MIGHTY Ducks and manages to help take the team to the finals and win it in his first full season. WHAT THE FUCK?!? Save us Derek Whitmore, you’re our only hope. A better time....
The following season, when Oilers GM/douche-nozzle Kevin Lowe fails to sign away Thomas Vanek from the Sabres (remember when Tommy had an 84 point season? Yeah, me neither), he makes Penner his consolation prize with a ridiculous 5 year, $21.25 million dollar contract for a guy with one year of NHL experience. Penner’s stats hold steady with the Oilers, but is later traded to the Kings in 2011 where his stats immediately drop, which I call a “Torres” or a “Boyes”.
Then this season, while still producing the worst stat-line of his career, Penner gets injured eating pancakes. Let me say that one more time. He got injured eating pancakes. The story goes, he got up in the morning, reached for a stack of his wife’s “delicious” pancakes, and then tweaked his back to the point he missed several weeks of action. Wowzers. Does anyone else think this sounds peculiar? I think since he goes out of the way to tell such an embarrassing story AND makes sure to mention his wife’s delicious pancakes, the real reason was him trying some insane sexual position with a USC co-ed and his wife found out about it. What’s that? His wife filed for divorce just a couple months later? Yup. NAILED IT.
Oh, then of course he wins another cup. Shithead.
Babe Ruth Me do good?
Oh the “greatest baseball player of all time.” Oh how he saved baseball (and paved the way for guys like Prince Fielder, out of shape “athletes” who need a mirror and a camera attached to a tiny robot to find their penis). Babe Ruth wasn’t the greatest baseball player of all time. He wasn’t even close. During a time when his popularity was at an all time high, he came in SECOND in the inaugural Hall of Fame vote (to the real greatest baseball player of all time, Ty Cobb, who everyone thought was a sack full of bastard cocks, and yet they still voted him in over Ruth). This is Yankee syndrome at its finest, where the largest American market with the most successful history sees its players get way more credit than they deserve. It’s why there are still people that think Derek Jeter is a defensive maven, or that Roger Clemens is innocent, or that Andy Pettitte is anything more than a super nice guy with some good moments and a last name that looks like the cat walked across the keyboard.
For those of you who are our old school DGWU Sports followers, you may remember my beef with Mr. Gary Sanborn. Before his Florida State rapey self came along, the Buffalo Bills had a great long-snapper named Ryan Neill. Ryan was a young, upstart kid from Jersey who not only could be the team’s long-snapper, but he could play defensive end and had a heart of gold! I should also mention he went to high school with my future wife and I was holding out for some cool hook-ups in the future. Garrison Sanborn ruined this for everyone!!!! STOP JUDGING ME!
This one is personal for me. I grew up in Syracuse, and there was a time when this city’s bandwagon shitstain residents suddenly decided “hey, we’re all Eagles fans now!” There were times when the Eagles received precedence over the Bills on the local Fox affiliate because the programming manager has Ben Roethlisberger-caliber decision making skills. (No seriously dude, just guard this bathroom, it’ll be awesome.) So even though there were times I rooted for McNabb, I grew to despise him. When the T.O. saga hit, I got to see his stupid bearded face all over my TV all the time. It was the beginning of the slow death march of my interest in the NFL. It amazes me how much a victim McNabb became even though he is A). extremely annoying, B). A dick, C). sucks, D). constantly showed up out of shape, E). All of the above, and F). has a stupid looking face. Donovan McNabb’s face is diaper rash mixed with crotch rot mixed with bathing a paper cut in lemon juice. Google image search "Donovan McNabb" and all you find is his un-helmeted face grinning through stupid press conferences where the only caption that makes sense is "herp a derp derp derp." Now do the same for Fred Jackson. Wall to wall pictures of him playing football. Exactly.
Note from The Barrister:
This entry is from a new guest contributor here at DGWU Sports - The Grouch. As you all will see, the kid has some things he wanted to get off his chest. Some of these things will probably piss some of you off. A lot. But, since we don't really have a lot of respect for any of you or whatever you think, we've let the Grouch step in and take the DGWU soapbox. Make sure to leave some comments below if you wish to verbally berate El Groucherino. It's been months since anything on the site incited the wrath of our dear readers, so here's hoping that you all feel inspired to drop some hate before you depart. Enjoy!
So it turns out there are a lot of quiet truths in the world. Truths we know about ourselves, that we know about each other. Things that are virtually indisputable, but that we dispute anyway, because things are supposed to be one-way-or-another, because we are supposed to exhibit this emotion or that idea. There are things like that in every facet of life. There are things like that in the sports world. There are things like that about the Buffalo Bills and Buffalo Sabres that you know, that I know, that we just don't want to admit to ourselves. Here are 10 things about Buffalo Sports that you already know but you don't want to know.
10 - It was a Lateral.
Science has proven it. Math has proven it. I think someone from the afterlife might have stopped by in the spare pope-mobile just to be sure that we knew that it was a lateral. I was as bummed that the Bills allowed the "Music City Miracle" to happen as anybody, but the frigging thing went backwards, or at least exactly even, and the kick coverage was just piss poor. Yet we continue to banter out about how this was another in a long line of conspiracies against Buffalo, because the world dislikes snow and chicken wings. Enough already. Want to be bitter? Be bitter about the obvious, blatant, unfortunate holding on Steve Christie as he desperately attempted to make a play on the return (not that it had mattered), or the fact that Rob Johnson started that football game for no good reason. But don't be bitter about the lateral. It was a lateral.
9 - The "Bills Mafia" is a neat idea with a stupid name.
Fan and community organization is cool. "Mafia" is the dumbest name I could possibly think of sticking on it, though. "Mafia" was what the dumb kids referred to their cliques as in the 7th grade. The dumb kids, let's remember.
8 - Buffalo is never going to be a great city again.
We sometimes attribute our sports success or failure to the region's success and failure. Sorry. There is no comeback. It will always be what it is, and we should be proud of that. The time for a once-great city to exist in that particular part of the country, with its climate, its resources, its socioeconomic culture will never change. No matter how successful the Bills and Sabres become, people will never want to move to Buffalo in droves, the spirit of entrepreneurship has moved on permanently. It is too cold and there are too many obstacles. There will always be small gains, but as the "Queen City", Buffalo is broken beyond repair.
7 - When it comes to the difference between the likability, culture, etc. of professional athletes, race and background matters.
Football players and hockey players are different in a lot of ways. One of the ways that they're different is their socioeconomic background, one of the reasons that is different is because of their race. That's not always the case, but it is enough to call it a rule. For the most part, we all like football and hockey, and we should probably keep it at that, because liking who we like better, when unraveled deep down to the core, reveals things about ourselves we probably don't want to come to terms with.
6 - But really, the most popular team in town is the most successful team in town.
Does it feel like the Bills are just a little less interesting this week than last week? [Ed note: This point was much more salient when the Grouch wrote it between the Week 4 loss and the Week 5 win. Yet, I think we get his point.]
5 - Jerry Sullivan, Sal Maiorana and Mike Schopp are bad at their jobs. But no one is stepping up to do a better job, either.
We do not have alternative sports radio or an alternative sports periodical. The blogs are constantly in a Cold War with one another, never willing to "fully" work together without a guarantee that their specific blog would be the one to receive recognition and creative control. Creating a real alternative requires time, money, manpower and resilience. No combination of these things have been successfully presented by anybody.
4 - And they won't be.
Buffalo is a shrinking small to mid-sized market. Regular readers and listeners hesitate to expend their limited discretionary income on alternative media. There is no organization amongst people who wish to provide alternatives. The blogs are mostly out for themselves. Too many independent writers are wooed by the slightest bit of attention or recognition from the traditional media. Too many people want to listen to traditional journalists, who are going extinct, by everyone's admission. It is, in other words, generally not a good idea to read a survival guide written by dinosaurs.
3 - Being drunk at football games does not make football games better.
It makes you feel better, and yes, there is a difference. [Ed. Note: Whaaaa???]
2 - Ralph Wilson Stadium isn't "kind of" a dump. It's a dump. It's our dump, and it's all wholesome and has character and -- whatever -- it's a dump.
It is, in one of the coldest parts of the country, an outdoor stadium, built in the middle of nowhere, with tiny, insufficient concourses, outdated luxury boxes and an increasingly obnoxious parking lot situation. It's a dump. It's our dump. It's the only dump we'll ever have, because we don't have enough money to buy a new dump. Ralph Wilson Stadium is your 250 lb wife, who was once a passable 130 lb young lady with perky tits. But now you're both 45, have had 3 kids and do not have time for healthy foods and exercise. Thing is, you're old and broke and ugly too. You're never going to do any better. It's your dump, and it's all you'll ever have.
1 - We're bad fans. We hear a lot about how great of fans we are, mostly because people buy tickets and we "care" about our teams. But there reaches a point where it gets a little gross, also. Trekkies, the nerdy and somewhat religious fanatics of Star Trek are made fun of for a reason. And that reason is, caring too much is as bad as not caring enough. Whether it's vandalizing a player's lawn for making a mistake or bothering a player at the grocery store, the sports of Buffalo are a little too entangled in everyday life for comfort. And that probably makes things worse for everything else. We probably shouldn't give out keys to the city to athletes anymore, either. It probably just unlocks things about us which we wish we never knew.
Silky Johnson, 2002's Hater of the Year.
Warning to all you loveable, soft-hearted Buffalonians who read this blog: this post is covered in Haterade of the Brooklyn kind. Buyer beware.
Alright Buffalo. I've stayed away from one of these posts at the behest of my colleagues because they insist that I'm a professional hater. I tried to not write this. It's been a month or so since he took over the franchise, and I've only muttered these types of thoughts at the end of several pints. I've tried so hard to not be the Debbie Downer, but DAMN IT Y'ALL MADE ME DO IT I CAN'T STOP IT ANYMORE. THE HATE FLOWS FROM MY VEINS LIKE ANAKIN AFTER HE SMOKED THAT VILLAGE OF SAND PEOPLE!
MANY BOTHANS DIED FOR THIS POST!
. Has Got
. I bit my tongue when he cried at the press conference because everyone was digging it. I stayed away from the weirdos obsessing over the daughters and their respective twittage because....well because I stay away from subtle pedophilia like it's AIDS. I stayed away from basically all of Pegula-mania because I just want owners to own, players to play, and teams to fucking win cups. But this birthday shit......this hater CANNOT abide. In the words of my TV doppelganger:
This is a $6,400 suit! COME ON!
I understand everyone is pumped about an underachieving shyte of a team underwhelming themselves to an 8th seed when teams above them with half the talent are cruising to playoff berths or division championships (COUGH - THE BRUINS COUGH COUGH - THE RANGERS). I get that. I get that a billionaire decided his sunset years would be spent questing for the Sabres to get a cup. I get that, and fuck I love it too. But seriously. The guy changed the carpeting in the lockerroom, ditched the slug, and put up a suggestion box. We didn't go out and get Brad Richards. We're not smashing our way to a 1 seed. All we did was start operating like the other 90% of the league. WHEN HE WINS CUPS, I WILL SING. UNTIL THEN LET US NOT ACT LIKE JESUS RAINED MONEY ON DOWN FROM HIGH WITH WHICH WE ARE TO BATHE OUR GRUNDELS.
God love you Buffalo, act like you've been here before.
See? Haterade. Don't say I didn't warn you.