Ryan Miller the lone Buffalo Sabre to be invited to the Team USA Orientation Camp

Team USA announced the invitees to the Orientation Camp for the 2010 Olympics, and Ryan Miller was one of them. I expected this as seeing there aren't many American goalies in the league as there is, and Ryan was supposed to play in the 2006 Olympics if it weren't for a broken thumb that kept him out of it. The big debate at this camp I think will be who will be the starter goaltender. If you asked me before this season, I would say Ryan hands down (and I'm bias). Tim Thomas has really come into his own the past two seasons and even won the Vezina trophy so you know there will be some major competition. I'll be interested as to see how everything goes.


Really short Draft recap.

I haven't even been able to watch all of the first round of the draft yet, but I did read about the picks Buffalo made. It was nice to hear and read that they went out and picked a bunch of hard-nosed, tough players. It'll be good for the organization once they're ready to come up to the league and play. I had planned on bringing my Hockey News Draft Preview guide when I went to graduation so I could read up on the picks but I totally forgot. I'll have to look for it so I can read up on the likes of Zack Kassian and Marcus Foligno. They both sound very excited to come to Buffalo from listening to their interviews.

I hope I'm not the only one scared about Chris Pronger coming to the east coast. The thought frightens me. Especially for the Flyers, ick. At least I can now like Joffrey Lupul freely.


Lindy Ruff named Associate Coach of Team Canada.

Our wonderful coach was named one of the Associate Coaches for Team Canada earlier today. The 'stache will be walking behind the bench when the Olympics come around next year, and I can't wait to see it. Congratulations to Lindy and the other coaches for being named to the team.

I still think either Russia or Sweden is going to dominate but that's just me...


What the Sabres are 'supposed' to do at the Draft.

Darcy Regier spoke with the media yesterday about what the team is supposedly going to do with the Draft. I listened to the interview this morning and wrote down some things as I listened to him speak.

One of the reporters asked him if he believes the team is good enough as it is to make the playoffs. He said they are. Now the keyword is 'make' in this sentence. The team will need to get some sort of piece if they want to go far into the playoffs. Most of the time, Darcy only talked about just making the playoffs. I know this team can go farther with a little help. He said the keys to the Sabres being able to get into the playoffs with the players they have is maturation (which is true) and Tim Connolly playing an entire season can also help. I won't hold my breath on the latter, though it would be really awesome to watch Timmy play an entire season.

Darcy said that he would probably not make any major moves during Free Agency because of the lack of UFAs. Actually, just look north to the Canadiens where it seems like there are thousands of free agents coming out of that team. With teams locking up guys long term, it's going to be a bit more difficult to go out and get players.

Then he mentions how people need to hold accountability in the locker room. You know there are the guys that come right out bluntly and state things (Ryan, Goose) and then you got the guys who don't think they can do anything 'well enough' (Thomas). A lot more guys need to step up and point fingers. I know they are all BFFs because they've been together forever, but if you're really friends, then you'll tell one another that you have to be better.

Darcy mentioned that he was talking to Spacho's agent (yey!) but they both think that he might want to try the market on July 1st (boo!). Come on Spacho, we love you here! Please stay!
Oh, and he's also working on the RFAs. I have a feeling Clarkie won't be here next year, for some reason. ):

I would absolutely love to see Tyler Myers up here next season, but it depends on how he does in training camp. I was at the preseason game he played in, and he looked just like how a rookiw should and someone who needs developing. He did a good job in juniors and also in the Memorial Cup. Like I said, it all depends on how he looks to the organization when he's here for training camp.

Remember when the Sabres could roll four lines and they were awesome? Yeah, me too. Darcy thinks that with some of the rookies in Portland, they have the ability to get back to how it was in the 06-07 season. Nothing can be as awesome as the RAV line was. Nothing.

Last thing he noted was that Patty Lala should be ready to go for the upcoming season and that Pie will be just fine after his little mishap.


The NHL Awards

I'm not officially back for blogging yet, but I figured I would make a post about the NHL Awards from last night. It looks like the turnout in Las Vegas was great which is a good sign for the league. Just no team there, please.

I watched the red carpet arrivals before the actual show on NHL.com. I was starting to wonder where Carrie Milbank went off to because I don't know if The Hockey Show got the boot or what. I enjoyed watching it every once and awhile. I think my favorite interview had to be with Sergei Fedorov, only because I had no idea his English was so perfect. You listen to retired players like Igor Larionov, and they're English is still broken but then again, I think Larionov came here in the 80s'...Maybe Fedorov did too, I don't know. I was still pretty surprised.

Ovie being the gentlemen on the red carpet, of course. I felt super bad for the showgirl on his left because for most of the time on the red carpet, she had to hold up her 2K sign. It fell down probably before they arrived and she had someone fix it later. I am glad that Ovie said an interview though that he enjoyed 'Pool. Beer. Girls. Party.' Oh NHL, what have you done by setting Alexander Ovechkin loose on the city of Las Vegas?

The first award up was the Calder Trophy, with Steve Mason winning it with a large lead ahead of Bobby Ryan. I was watching this with my mom for most of the time, and she felt like he had an incredibly long speech. I didn't mind his speech so much but I would like him to tell his girlfriend that she cakes on the eyeliner. Honey, I bet you look beautiful under all of that.
Oh, and this is for Cari because I know how much she loves Verbeauty:

That is a nice tie, Kris.

(For the rest of the time, the awards are going to be out of order because I don't have a list in front of me of how the order was.)

The Fan Fav Five(? Jeremy Roenick's going to come get me for this one.) was given to Roberto Luongo. I watched him walk up there, almost smacked my forehead and I wanted to say 'You really screwed up that last game against the Blackhawks.' I just keep thinking how he let in seven goals. Ugh. Okay Lu, next year is a new season - and as Michael Bublé said on the red carpet, if only the Stanley Cup went to you fellas. Then again, I'm a happy camper with the winners of it this year. WOOOOOOOOOO!

Jean Belivéau won the Lifetime Achievement Award from Gary Bettman. Gordie Howe won it last year, bring Mr. Hockey and all. I really love Mr. Belivéau's French accent. I also love when they show clips of old hockey games. They need to find footage from like, the 1950s' and air it on the NHL Network because I would so watch that.

Evgeni 'Geno' 'Frankenberry' Malkin won the Conn Smythe after the Penguins won the Cup, and he also won the Art Ross Trophy for having accumulated the most scoring during the regular season. I was happy to see Geno with the Conn Smythe, though I would've loved to see Max Talbot with it too. He was a big help to the Pens success this year in the playoffs. Still, it is very well deserved by Geno. He played a lot better this post season than he did last year.

Ethan Moreau (who I thought was Steve Staios, I don't know why...) won the King Clancy Award for showing a lot of dedication to the Edmonton community. I always get choked up when I watch montage with little kids who are in hospitals and are getting the chance of a lifetime to meet their heroes. From the photographs they showed on the big screen, Ethan really deserved the award.

Pavel Datsyuk won the Selke Trophy and the Lady Byng Trophy. So not only has he stolen the Lady Byng from Jason Pominville, but he stole the Selke Trophy from Ryan Kesler too! You and I are not on good terms Mr. Datsyuk.
I really didn't think Ryan has a chance against Pavel to be honest, but it would've been awesome to see him win it. I'm still mad about Pommers. ):

Jarome Iginla won the Mark Messier Leadership Award. You know, I would love to be able to watch more Flames games just for Jarome. I've heard so many great things about the guy, and I know Anne loves him, so when I get the NHL Newtork back in the fall I will have to watch more of those games. That's the unfortunate part about being on the east coast - I see the likenesses of Sidney Crosby, Alex Ovechkin, Vinny Lecavalier - but what about Jarome, Roberto Luongo, Niklas Backstrom?

Alex Ovechkin won the Hart Trophy, the Rocket Richard Trophy, and Lester B. Pearson Award. He always is a crazy guy on and off the ice, but I like seeing him at this award show too because he always comes off as a humble guy. He acts like a douche sometimes but I really do like Ovie and the type of player. Obviously not when he plays against the Sabres because he scores every single game they play against him. Oh, and I was so waiting for them to show the clip of him embarrassing Hank and Toni then scoring on Ryan. The Sabres lost that game, right? I don't even remember. All I remember from that game is that Alex destroyed Thomas' leg and then he came back and scored in the second period. Take THAT!

Tim Thomas won the Jennings Trophy with Manny Fernandez, and then won the Vezina Trophy. I was listening to the NHL Hour with Gary Bettman before the Awards show and Tim Thomas explained his entire story of coming up to the NHL. He's actually been through quite a bit as a player; trying to hard to get to the big leagues. I think he's certainly established himself as a great goaltender, and this trophy is the icing on the cake. I'm sure the USA goaltender debate has already started...

Nicklas Lidstrom's Norris Trophy run was ended by the gargantuois Zdeno Chara. I guess Nicklas didn't have the exact year that he wanted and Zee had a much better one. I reall have no thoughts on the pick because even though we Sabres fans watch Boston a ton, I never really noticed how Chara played. All I know about Mike Green was that he scored over 30 goals, was it? Oh, and his fauxhawk is pure love. Derek Roy, take notes!

Boston continued to clean up as Claude Julien won the Jack Adams Trophy. Now I was talking to my mother after he got up there, and was completely confused. Lindy Ruff won it back in '06 for what he did with the Sabres after the lockout - leading them to the Eastern Conference Finals. Claude Julien this year led the team to the top of the East all year long. Lindy Ruff did that in '07, got them to the East. Conference Finals AND they won a President's Trophy, but Alain Vigneault won in Vancouver (which is fine by me). Now, how do they pick the Jack Adams winner exactly? I am just entirely confused to the whole process and what they look for.

Well, this was a really long post for my first one back. Exciting! I haven't been writing major posts lately and I wanted to make this one worthwhile. Hopefully I'll get back to being here a lot soon after I get my laptop for school.


I've been a very bad blogger lately.

It's tough to keep this thing updated when hockey is almost over, and Sabres news is as exciting as watching paint dry. I have absolutely nothing to discuss. I could talk about the Stanley Cup finals easily but I'm never motivated to actually make a post on it. Sad, no?

Besides, I will be on hiatus for awhile seeing as how I am starting the move to Williamsville tomorrow morning. I'll be right down the street from UB. My mom said she doesn't know when the internet is going to be hooked up so I will have to hang tight. I don't mind. I need to get away from the computer for a few weeks anyways.

I hope that by the time I get back, there will be many exciting things to talk about in Sabres country! If not then...well, I'll find something to talk about.


Patrick Lalime's surgery is successful.

The Sabres Lunch Express is glorious, and Lala told Kevin about how his surgery went. He actually went under two surgeries to work on his sports hernia and a correction of his one hip. Hopefully all is corrected now and they won't be affecting him in the future. After watching the clip, I had forgotten how much I had missed that cute French-Canadian accent. Awe.


Sabres sign someone, aka Paul Byron.

The Sabres got some business done a few days ago with the signing of prospect Paul Byron. I added him on Facebook immediately after I read the news and he accepted my friend request shortly after. I'm getting around with these Sabre prospects, hooray!

Darcy signed him before the 5 PM deadline yesterday so that he wouldn't get put back into the draft. I have no idea who else has been shuffled back into the draft because the team failed to sign them this year. I know Allard is one, but I have no idea about the rest, unfortunately.