Archive for February, 2012:

If we wanted Brad Marchand’s opinion, we’d be Bruins fans

And lets face it, no one really wants that.

In case it wasn’t that much of public knowledge, I am not from this city. I’m not even from this country. However, I have always considered it to be my pseudo home, as I’ve spent most of my life in western New York.

I was born outside a city nearly five times the size of Buffalo, I did a school report on how Buffalo is the 17th most dangerous city in America (or was it 13th?).

It’s too hot in the summer, too cold in the winters, too many pot holes, and still no one knows why it sometimes smells like sewage down by the arena.

However, I do love this city.

Apparently, others don’t agree.

 Joffrey Lupul acted like Buffalo was the only city to have empty parking lots and snow storms, Tom Brady is suddenly an expert on class.


Another reason to hate the Bruins.

 According to Brad Marchand, Buffalo is the worse city in the NHL, and apparently that makes it true. More so, because NESN is backing him up (we can’t even get WGR to do that).

In an article from the networks’ website about Marchand’s commentary, David Brumber wrote the following:

”  After the whole Tom Brady incident earlier this month, the city of Buffalo might need to take a hint and start cleaning up their act. “

Even hours after reading the article, I still stare at that one comment, trying to determine a proper response. Clean up what exactly? Is Tom Brady going to care if theres a little less trash in the streets, or of our buildings are a bit more spruced up? Will Brad Marchand buy a summer house here if the crime rates drop?

Surely, no one knows whats going on with the water front, but it’s still nice to look at. I assure you, none of the previously mentioned athletes have never seen any of our festivals, the Elmwood district, or Chippewa on a – sober- Thursday night.

And they certainly don’t know that the Goo Goo Dolls concerts are a little bit better in Buffalo than anywhere else. 720w" sizes="(max-width: 300px) 100vw, 300px" />

Ain't it something?

Maybe it’s easier for the second place team to tell the fourteenth place team to ‘ clean up their act.’ And I’m sure they just like to get a rise out of Buffalonians (both Lupul and Marchand have commented that it was just to stir up rivalry). Either way, we’re more likely to unleash an enforcer during the game than an insult on someones home city.

Sorry, Bradley, we don’t need your apology.

End Rant.

Edit: This post was written prior to the Bruins game on the 24th. Thankfully, the Sabres won so I did not have to alter the post, nor slash the Bruins bus tires so they’d be stuck in the the ‘ worse’ NHL city.

Because, you know, there are no other forms of transportation that could be used to get to the airport.





Posted in: Sabres

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Johnny’s Blog from the Basement to TBN: “It’s ON! Sorta!”

Hey! It’s Saturday! Time to waste my time and yours with some nonsensical drivel. Apologies in advance.

If you’re still reading after that lede, steel yourself – it only gets worse from here.

The fact that it is Saturday means a lot of you readers out there aren’t at work, and thereby aren’t fulfilling that arduous 9-5 grind by reading Sabres blogs. So, I’m not going to waste my time going over the Sabres game tonight, and how their playoff chances can be impacted by the result. Actually, Bucky has a nice column up about that today – although he missed one very important point, which we noted yesterday: the teams ahead of us for 8th are CRAP.

You can’t ignore the #Crapshoot, Bucky. These teams, no matter how you spin it, are terrible. Let me remind you of the powerhouses in front of us:

Think the Sabres flame out in the playoffs? 400w" sizes="(max-width: 300px) 100vw, 300px" />

The Cats at least make for a cute little run at the playoffs. Here's your "Cups," Panthers fans. 350w" sizes="(max-width: 300px) 100vw, 300px" />

As @Katebits pointed out last night, even if we miss the playoffs, it would be hilarious if we still finished ahead of the Leafs.

Meanwhile, Mike Harrington put up a read on Tuesday that took a wry little poke at bloggers.

As a veteran who is seventh in the league in faceoff percentage, can kill penalties and play against another team’s top scoring line, Gaustad might rank as one of the better rental players on the market. Basically, his name is everywhere from major media outlets on both sides of the border to Johnny’s Blog from the Basement.

Yea, I know. It wasn’t a snarky kick in the nuts about the work we bloggers put in. It was just a broad statement covering all sources of trade rumors, from the tip to the base of the iceberg. No harm intended, no harm done. It’s not like he called us “venomous.” That oddly misinformed nut-kick opinion was from Bucky:

Black found the people around him to be different than the irate talk-show callers he hears and venomous bloggers he reads who want the roster blown up and everybody fired.

For the record, Mr. Harrington and Mr. Gleason, I do not want to shoot a bazooka into the Sabres locker room, and I do not blog from a basement.

Nope. I don’t even have a basement. I have a crawlspace. (It’s called “check your sources.”) Yea – I blog under the house, with the rats and the squirrels (and the squirrels are nothing to scoff at, starving as they are, this time of the year). 500w" sizes="(max-width: 300px) 100vw, 300px" />

I blog like my life is on the line. Because it is. (Image:

Right now, while the wifey is in the kitchen cooking up some Sloppy Joes for lunch, I’m doing my job down here in the dirt, with skittering varmints in the corner, and all I have for light is this crappy Lowe’s flashlight that I have to keep whacking as it continuously flickers out. 514w" sizes="(max-width: 300px) 100vw, 300px" />

And there are spiders, too. SPIDERS.

And it is not easy typing with kevlar gloves. Again, those squirrels are nasty. Some might even call them “venomous.”

And they’re waiting for me.

And so are those Sloppy Joes.

So, excuse me while I crawl out of here – hopefully I’ll make it out alive for tonight’s game against the Rangers, where the Sabres will try to keep this playoff drive #Crapshoot alive.

Go Sabres.

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#SeedsOfGreatness Update: It’s a #Crapshoot Now

New meme!

Today the Sabres face off against the hated Bruins, for a pair of points that actually means something for the Sabres. While we’ve continuously insisted that the highlight of the season will be seeing Darcy Regier’s embarrassed smile at the draft lottery table, the Sabres continue to stalk 8th place – right now they’re just 7 points back, with 22 games remaining.

And the teams ahead of them aren’t exactly powerhouses. 400w" sizes="(max-width: 300px) 100vw, 300px" />

It's all snake eyes for the teams stalling out around 8th place these days.

Tampa? Crap.

Washington? Crap.

Toronto? Crap.

Florida? Crap.

We’ll count Winnipeg in this, too. Total crap. They’re in 3rd place, but only because they lead the crappy SE Division over Florida, Washington and Tampa. That division is so terrible that even its last place Canes are just 9 points away from stealing the grubby 2011-12 SE Divisional crown. 300w" sizes="(max-width: 430px) 100vw, 430px" />

Wow. Nice goal differentials, South East Division.

Yup. To get to 8th place, the Sabres have to leap over a lot of teams. Thankfully, all of those teams are awful.

The Sabres can get actually do this. Lindy Ruff may believe in his players and all that nonsense, but frankly, this whole 8th place thing is up for grabs.

May the best loser win.

Welcome to the #Crapshoot.

Get it trending.

Go Sabres.

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Sabres GIFs: The Miller Snow Angel Save; also, #HappyPegulaDay, and #MiracleOnIce Day!


I know what you’re thinking.

Today, instead of checking the league standings, Buffalo fans are actually checking the Eastern Conference standings, and wondering over how the heck the Sabres are now just 6 points out of 8th.

Can they…? Will they…? 500w" sizes="(max-width: 300px) 100vw, 300px" />

This sign doesn't feel as gray today. It feels a little bit more blue and gold.

I dunno, but they’ve got 22 games to close that gap. Suddenly, anything feels possible again. #SeedsOfGreatness are silently still being planted while we’ve so recently abandoned them (as seeds of greatness often do), and the draft lottery, at least for one more day, seems like a thing of the past.

What a buzz! Maybe it’s the magical buzz of Pegula Day, who started this whole Hockey Heaven thing on 2-22-11, but I’m feeling pretty swell about our plucky Sabres today. I hope you are, too.

Aside from Pegula Day, I hope you also enjoy this wild GIF from last night’s Paczki Day performance by Ryan Miller. We’ll call it the “Miller Snow Angel Save,” as Millsie adds yet another remarkable moment to his Youtube career.

Beer Miller earned!

Enjoy the day, folks.

Oh, it also just so happens to be the birthday of Pat LaFontaine (1965) – his 1.17 points per game still ranks tops among all American born players, retired or active.

And it’s ALSO the 32nd anniversary of the “Miracle on Ice.

Yea, there’s a buzz in the air today.



Get ’em trending.

Go Sabres.

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Do You Remember: The Earl Of Bud


If you attended games at the Aud, then you knew about Earl Howze Jr., but perhaps not by that name. Most are more familiar with his nickname, the “Earl of Bud”. For those who are unfamiliar, a little recap should hopefully be fun – and a nice reminder for us older fans.

The “Earl of Bud” was known by that name because he sold beer in both the old War Memorial Auditorium and where the Bisons played (Both the old Rockpile and whatever the new place is being called these days – hell I can’t keep up).

But he was much more than a simple beer-slinger. He had an outgoing personality and everyone wanted to buy beer from him. He would also ham it up for the crowd and sometimes the TV cameras during game breaks to “Tequila”. He maintained a popularity that was as great as, if not better than, some of the players.

He was a local celebrity, posing for pictures, signing autographs, even appearing in some television commercials. I was only a kid when I saw him but I remember everyone being enraptured with whatever he was doing, even if it was simply climbing up the stairs carrying a bunch of beer. 272w" sizes="(max-width: 233px) 100vw, 233px" />

Dancin' Homer - another example of the common man becoming a legend at a sporting event. If you're feeling it, you could do it too!

Here’s the Earl of Bud at the last game played at the Aud:

Earl did his shtick through the 80s and much of the 90s until mysteriously disappearing. The only article I could find on it was a repost of a Buffalo News (TBN) article on a blog (the real article is from 2007 and apparently is not in TBN’s database). From the article:

“He went in and quit the ballpark and the arena all in one day,” said Tom Girot, the conspicuous beer vendor known as Conehead. “It was just amazing. One day the Earl of Bud is there, and the next day he’s gone. It was like he fell off the face of the earth.”

Apparently Earl also worked as a firefighter and he injured his knee at some point. The story holds that he got a pension from the firefighter job but they were pissed about his very public job where he was apparently able to lug beer up and down the aisles and dance in front of people.

It seems to fit. Here’s a guy who loves the limelight, loves entertaining people and being The Man. But he isn’t able to do it anymore, partly because of a bum knee and partly because if he does it he can’t make the money he depends on to survive. So he shuffles off into the sunset and heads elsewhere where they don’t know him. Here in Buffalo, everyone would be asking him why he’s not at the games.

The TBN article states that he danced for the last time in August of 1997. Seven months later he filed for bankruptcy and apparently shortly thereafter moved to Chattanooga, Tennessee where his children and grandchildren live.

“I take it easy and visit my kids and grandkids a lot, just fishing and traveling,” Howze said by phone from Chattanooga. “I’m loving the mountains. Everything is different than Buffalo. Everything here is new to me. It’s like starting a different life over again.”

Just like a bad informercial it’s time to throw in a “BUT WAIT, THERE’S MORE!” (Side note: “bad infomercial is kind of redundant, isn’t it? Are there good infomercials?) In May of 2007, during game 5 of the playoff series between the Sabres and the NY Rangers, the Earl of Bud returned majestically from out of nowhere and did his thing, dancing before fans and prompting them to yell “TEQUILA!” It wasn’t enough to help the Sabres get the win, but perhaps it helped the Sabres win the series in the long run. 600w" sizes="(max-width: 300px) 100vw, 300px" />

An older Earl doing his thing upon his once and only return in 2007.

The Earl of Bud also popped up on Twitter last year – apparently. He was only online for a short time in the spring of 2011, if it was indeed him and not a fake account.

Hopefully everything is going good for the Earl. He showed us that anyone can be a star and that you can find unique ways to do common, blue-collar jobs. Just by doing a simple dance and chatting with people he made a more lasting impression on fans than some players do.

A couple other Earl of Bud videos:


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