Buffalo Sabres History
The Buffalo Sabres have been an integral part of the NHL since first joining the league
in 1970. The team achieved early success with their famous French Connection line that consisted of Rick Martin, Gilbert Perreault,
and René Robert. Those three helped guide the Sabres to their first of two Stanley Cup Finals appearances in 1975 where
they lost to the Philadelphia Flyers. The Sabres always seem to be a threat to go deep into the playoffs and challenge for
a Stanley Cup, though the big trophy has eluded them so far. The Sabres have come close to taking down the Cup, most recently
in a classic series against the Dallas Stars in 1999 - a series that is remembered on both sides as one of the most intense
Finals match ups ever. The Sabres have had some struggles in recent years but appear to be headed back towards their former
About the Team
The Sabres are currently in last place in the Atlantic Division of the Eastern Conference,
and while a playoff berth seems unlikely, there is still hope that the Sabres can finish strong and pass the Florida Panthers
who sit just ahead of them in the division standings. If the Sabres can get their offense back on track in the off season
they have a legitimate chance at competing for a playoff spot in the 2014-2015 season, especially if points and leading goal
scorer Cody Hodgson and leading assist man Christian Ehrnoff can continue their strong output next year. First Niagara Center
is always loaded with fans that know how to show their support, but that's something that you need to see first-hand if you
want to understand what all the buzz is about. Whether it's a home or an away playoff game, the Sabres know how to put on
a show and the stands will be the only place worth being if you're a true fan, and you'll understand exactly why once you
see your Sabres storm the ice. Will you be there when your favorite player slips by his man and lights up the back of the
net with everything on the line?
Hockey fans in general are some of the most passionate
sports fans around, but nothing quite matches the fanaticism surrounding the NHL playoffs and fans of the Buffalo Sabres are
some of the most dedicated and vociferous fans in the entire NHL. On game day at First Niagara Center the fans file in and
take their seats and that is when the cheering and chanting begins. As the clock winds down closer and closer to the dropping
of the puck the crowd works itself into a frenzy. Finally both teams are ready for face off and the excitement really begins.
Thunderous, bone rattling hits, incredible displays of speed and agility, powerful slapshots, and tremendous saves set the
arena on fire for the following three periods of world class college hockey. By the time the final buzzer sounds your voice
is hoarse and your palms are stinging from clapping and giving high fives and you will already be planning a return trip.
Everything is ratcheted up a notch during the NHL playoffs and the further teams advance the more intense the competition
becomes. If you thought regular season NHL games were exciting, just wait until you experience an NHL playoff game live and
NHL Eastern Conference Atlantic Division
The Atlantic Division is comprised of eight teams:
the Boston Bruins, the Buffalo Sabres, the Detroit Red Wings, the Florida Panthers, the Montreal Canadiens, the Ottawa Senators,
the Tampa Bay Lightning, and the Toronto Maple Leafs. Many of the teams in the division are among the top franchises in the
history of the NHL including the Montreal Canadiens who have won 24 Stanley Cup Championships. The Boston Bruins are the most
recent current member of the division to have won a Stanley Cup, having done so in 2010. The Atlantic Division is in some
ways new to the NHL after the 2013 realignment when the former Atlantic Division was renamed the Northeast Division and the
current Atlantic Division was created out of teams the Northeast Division, the Southeast Division, and the Central Division.
From the 2013-2014 season on look for the newly reconstructed Atlantic Division to be one of the premiere divisions not only
in the Eastern Conference but in the entire NHL.
Six former Sabres have had their jerseys retired:
Tim Horton, Rick Martin, Gilbert Perreault, Rene Robert, Pat LaFontaine, and Danny Gare. The three members of the well known
French Connection line (Rick Martin, Gilbert Perreault, and René Robert) have a statue in front of First Niagara Center
erected in honor of them. Gilbert Perreault is far and away the franchise's leading points man with a career total of 1,326.
Dave Andreychuk who is second on the list has only 804 career points.