Tonawanda News

Columns

October 19, 2013

DUVALL: Hating a winner is the stuff of sore losers

(Continued)

Tonawanda News — I went to my first game of the year Thursday (I gave away a ticket to Monday's game to watch the Cards on television). As it happens, it's the first time I've been able to watch any Sabres game with undivided attention.

I'd read all the mocking assessments and heard all the groaning from fellow fans. The Sabres are just as bad as advertised.

They're the worst team in the league and one of the the worst teams in franchise history — if not the worst.

They're on pace to score about 1.3 goals per game, which would blow away the lowest goal-per-game average in league history (the expansion Tampa Bay Lightning scored 1.8 goals per game and only had one player with 20 or more tallies).

Fans have taken to chanting "Fi-re Dar-cy!" — a reference to general manager Darcy Regier. I've been on board with that for a while but whether it happens is far from a sure thing.

The team is in rebuilding mode. Regier famously said he thinks fans will be willing to endure "a little suffering" to build a winner.

But there's a big difference between "a little suffering" and being the worst team in the league.

Media reports surfaced last week in Canada that Regier is on the hot seat. It would seem odd to fire him after ownership signed off on the plan to trade away talented veterans and go with a bunch of kids. After all, wasn't this the plan?

Still, if they don't start winning — or at least playing competitive games — something will have to change or they'll face an open revolt from fans. 

If they keep being this bad, season ticket holders, the lifeblood of the organization, are going to walk away. Many of us (I've shared seasons for six years) rely on being able to sell some of our seats to help offset the cost. Right now you can barely give these things away. Any hope of selling a ticket for a profit is gone. Many fans will re-evaluate this off season and decide a poor product on the ice and a poorly managed franchise isn't worth the investment and give up their seats.

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Columns
  • adamczyk, ed.jpg ADAMCZYK: And now for something completely different... Last weekend I attended a local movie theater (a plushy, posh experience; they design these places now to get you out of your living room and away from your home electronics) to watch the sun set on the British Empire.

    July 25, 2014 1 Photo

  • wallace, amy.jpg WALLACE: Too much information? Is there such a thing as TMI or too much information anymore? Some might say yes.

    July 24, 2014 1 Photo

  • duvall, eric.jpg DUVALL: On reading and the lack thereof It was surprising to me a few weeks ago when a friend asked a group of us to estimate how many books we have each read over the last five years. The English teacher said 200 and he far and away led the pack. I was probably the median and my number was 20-25.

    July 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • confer, bob.jpg CONFER: A Con-Con would be a con game

    July 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • duvall, eric.jpg DUVALL: Conflict in Ukraine now a concern of global proportions It seems increasingly clear Ukrainian separatists, with the help from the Russian military, are responsible for the tragedy. They, of course, have denied it. They've also denied access to the crash site to international investigators seeking to recover the dead and determine what happened. That's not something the innocent party does.

    July 20, 2014 1 Photo

  • ADAMCZYK: Personal development, rendered in steel Accepting the premise that everyone needs to fill the same amount of time every day (24 hours, every day), some people use theirs rebuilding things, tangible things, and thus fulfill a few intangible goals.

    July 18, 2014

  • WALLACE: Festival season is underway Summer is the season of fairs and festivals. From Canal Fest in the Tonawandas to the Allentown Art Festival and Italian Heritage Festival in Buffalo to the Erie County Fair in Hamburg, the Western New York area has no shortage of things to do with the family over the summer.

    July 17, 2014

  • duvall, eric.jpg DUVALL: King George's abdication leaves many questions I've covered Niagara County politics for 10 years and it's been a fascinating -- and often infuriating -- experience. With the news the man known with equal parts respect and cynicism as "King George" is walking away it's about to get more interesting.

    July 16, 2014 1 Photo

  • Canal Fest, here we come This column should be titled "Roads and Streets." First of all, Meadow Drive is finally open. Although it took very long to be completed, it's beautiful. Riding by the other day brought into focus how many people will use this to cut across town. One less thing for residents to complain about.

    July 12, 2014

  • ADAMCZYK: Homesick for someplace I've never been You stumble over things that make you wonder. I do, at least, and the latest is one of those advertising artifacts from yesteryear that encourage me to ponder what's changed and what never will.

    July 11, 2014