How Encil “Porky” Palmer Kick-Started the Sabres of the Aud

The offseason is a time of reflection.

With that in mind, here is a cheery little tale of the old Aud, old time hockey, and Encil “Porky” Palmer.

Palmer, a longtime Sabres trainer (until his retirement in 1995), made a habit of situating himself behind the Zamboni door, near the opposition’s net in the first and third periods.

Whenever a puck would slide around the boards in that area, Palmer nonchalantly gave the door a stiff kick, often sending the puck ricocheting right out into the slot in front of an unsuspecting goalie.

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Frankly, the Aud's zamboni door has a history all its own. Get 'em, Schony! Can't help but wonder if Porky had a hand in this. If so, well played, Porky. Well played.

Ex-goalie Greg Millen was burned by one of Porky’s ricochets. He was not pleased. (Millen played for Pittsburgh, Hartford, St. Louis, Quebec, Chicago, and Detroit, and is now the “colour” commentator for Leafs games.)

“I remember one night, he did it and the Sabres ended up scoring. I was so livid, I slammed my stick against the glass right by his ear. They had enough of a home-ice advantage, with the rink being smaller than normal. But that was too much.”

Previous to being the nemesis of netminders at the Aud, Porky played for the Buffalo Bisons of the AHL and the Syracuse Blazers of the EHL in 64-65 and 67-68.

His position? Goaltender.

Interesting.

Ah, the good ol’ days. I don’t think we will ever see that kind of mischief again, under the scrutiny of today’s world of HD television.

Go Sabres.

 

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