Back in Black

20110222-Interior-TedBlackSmiling thru the pain

Ted Black has his weekly radio show were he answers calls from morons on Thursday. But Fracking Sabres has him on Tuesday to answer questions from this Moron.

FS: Ted, I bet the firing of Lindy was tough? What prompted it?

Ted: Well, the team seemed to regress against Winnipeg and seemed like the correct action to save the season.

FS: Wait, this season can be saved?

Ted: We believe we have the talent to win games and compete in this league. The season is still young.

FS: HAHAHAHAHAHAHA You’re funny Ted.

Ted: I wasn’t joking, that is the belief in the building.

FS: The season is almost half over and you are basically dead last, can’t play defense, don’t score and the new Coach thinks the team is lazy. And Ville Leino called them out. VILLE LEINO. He’s pretty much stealing money from you.

Ted: Fine! We’re a tire fire. Lindy Ruff quit weeks ago, but Terry chained him to the zamboni, why do you think he looked like he was being held hostage, because he was. Darcy is locked in his office, seeing what he can get for Nathan Gerbe.

FS: What can you get for a Nathan Gerbe?

Ted: The Wild has offered a Sega Genesis.

FS: I’m guessing Terry isn’t too pleased.

Ted: He replaced the coffee with Fracking Fluid. Jordan Leopold didn’t notice and drank a whole cup. His liver melted. That’s why he’s out. They lose both games in Florida, he’s leaving them in Cuba.

FS: Woah, well at least he got the HarborCenter Tax breaks, that’s a plus.

Ted: If he didn’t was going to drill the Webster block.

FS: But Fracking is illegal in NYS?

Ted: Terry don’t care, he’ll pay the fines. He slapped Bettman during the Lockout. He’s crazy when things don’t go his own way.

FS: Wow, my readers are getting a lot of information from you today.

Ted: Wait, this is all off record right, none of this can go public. Terry will…

(hits Publish)

FS: Thanks Ted for coming on again, for Back in Black, I hope to speak to you next week after the Florida Road Trip.



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Hoarders:Sabres Edition

sabres-320-isles-2-23You can keep this guy

We all wanted Lindy Ruff fired, it was time, it was obvious. But we didn’t think it would happen. Why? Because Pegula wasn’t going to fire him, he loved him, we all thought. He wouldn’t axe him in season. Wouldn’t happen. Never. Then it happened. Shocking us, players and media. Leaving Ron Rolston  in charge for the rest of the year.

It became obvious to me, this is it for the Ruff and Regier era, unless a magical turnaround happens, Darcy will be relieved at years end. Rolston will be probably returned to Rochester. And we’ll have a whole new team for the 13-14 season. Its been 16 years, so that means R&R have collected a lot of crap. The Presidents Trophy is buried underneath yellow Pom Poms.

Right now the Sabres are a sports version of Hoarders. Filled with junk, that Darcy couldn’t or didn’t want to get rid of. Sure there is some valuable stuff, underneath the piles of so called 2 way forwards. But he won’t get rid of those, because they may need them one day. Outside help is needed to really clean things up and finally make it look nice again. It will take a lot of hard work to clean all the crap out of FNC. Trading a Roy for an Ott, really didn’t make a dent in the garbage pile.

The team needs an outside eye, someone with zero attachment to the players, to really shake this organization up. A full house cleaning. Who is that person? I have zero clue, but I’m sure interest would be high at the position. Since you really don’t have to worry about a head coach. Rolston has a landing spot. You can bring in your own team.

You know the best part of a total house cleaning, the writers at the Buffalo News, wouldn’t know what to do, they have created these boogymen and they would be stuck at square 1. Can’t go after Pegula, because he did what everyone wanted. And you have lost your main targets of attack, Ruff and Regier. It would create an interesting off season for sure. All there pre written stories would go right into the Recycling bin.

But you can’t just get rid of Ruff and Regier, this team needs a major overhaul. If things stay the same, they would be in line for a  top 5 pick, which would add to the already nice talent pipeline in store. I have found the minor differences since Ruff got fired interesting. You have Rolston, slamming the team, when he walked in. Then you had Ville Leino, VILLE LEINO, slamming them in public.  When have you seen that from a current member on the roster?

The worst thing that could have happened this year, was another year of barely making the playoffs and getting bounced in Round 1. That’s cleaning out 1 room, to only stock it with junk a year later. This team is incapable of winning a Cup, with the current makeup. Usually when you fire a coach, things pick up. Nope not here, they have gone back to old ways, and there’s shit up and down the stairs.

This team has hoarded borderline 2 way players, inconsistent scorers and mentally soft players for too long. Time to get the dumpsters, brooms and vacuums out, because its time to get rid of this junk. Hey what about this Nathan Gerbe! No, get rid of it. But this Drew Stafford, could be worth something. OUT!!!!

I’m excited to see how things go, not for the product on the ice, but the next few months. This house needs to be cleaned up, because its on the verge of being condemned.


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What me Worry?

Don't Worry I got this

I see all the time this worry about the Sabres being over the Salary cap.  We worry about this now? Last year we wouldn’t dream the Sabres would ever be millions over the Salary Cap. You would have been laughed at if you suggested that could happen. Looking at the Sabres are 3.5 million dollars over the cap with 23 players signed and Marc Andre Gragnani left to sign. So they could possibly be 4.3 million dollars over, when things are all done.

Oh no we’re Screwed, we’re going to have to trade someone good. HOPE IS LOST!

Not so fast, worrisome Sabre fan. We have Darcy Regier.

He knows what he is doing, there is a plan here. He didn’t handle the Enroth contract. That is totally beneath him. Backup goalie? Please. Darcy’s too busy laughing at the Leafs contract with Tim Connolly. I hear Lindy is handling the Gragnani deal, because Darcy is too busy prepping for a garage sale. Old Grosek jerseys for 5 bucks a pop!

I have no worries the Sabres will get under the cap and be fine through out the year. Without sacrificing anything that would hurt their chances at a cup. Darcy has already circumvented the Cap this offseason. He can also massage the numbers to go his way. By dumping salary in Rochester. Tricking a GM to take Shaone Morrisonn off his hands.  I’m sure the Jets need an 6th defenseman.

So Sabre fans stop worrying and just get excited for the season. The defense is stacked, which makes Miller better, which will make the offense better since they don’t have the pressure to score more.

The cap is just a number and numbers can be manipulated.  And Darcy is a master manipulator.



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Back in Black

Hey everyone welcome to my new segment Back in Black.  With one of the most popular men in town,  Ted Black. He’ll be here to answer my questions and any issues I see fit. I put this idea in the Suggestion box, so Ted does everything in the Suggestion box.

FS: Hello Ted, how are you enjoying June in Buffalo?

TB:  It’s been great, trying to find a house and waiting to bring up the family from Pittsburgh.

FS: The Locker room renovation is going full bore, so will it be done on time?

TB: On the Current schedule, yes, it will be ready.

FS: So you’re not using Union workers then?  (don’t shoot me just a joke)

TB: (Laughs) We hired the best people we could.

FS: Free agency and the Draft are right around the corner, so any rumors you can put out there to get the fans fired up?
TB: I stay out of the hockey operations, just the team operations. Darcy and his staff have everything under control. Not my place to be involved. Too much on my plate already.

FS: Ok, thought I try. At least you’re not a meddler light your predecessor, The LQ, I’m sure there are some stories about him at HSBC.

TB: Mr Quinn worked very hard for the success of the Sabres, and did a great job in running the operations.

FS: (rolls eyes) Come on Ted, just you and me here. Gimme a good story.

TB: Well, I heard he used to make Ales Kotalik take him to the airport and carry his bags, as part of that contract.


TB: He also made the team sit through his impression of this scene in Miracle.  It’s the real reason Drury left.

FS: Wow, that’s brutal, So, you’re having a blogger summit soon. Where’s my invite.

TB: Well based on content we picked the writers we deemed best suited.

FS: Its the Fracking title isn’t it?

TB: Well, no. You have like 5 posts. That’s not very productive.


TB: Doesn’t sound like you could make it anyway.

FS: (sniffles) No, but just the recognition would be nice. (excuses self)

TB: Oh Boy,  this was a mistake to agree to.

FS: Ok, I’m better now. So, there’s secret Gas well drilling at HSBC isn’t there?

TB: That’s it. I’m done.  I’m Ted Black and I don’t have to put up with this.  I’M IMPORTANT. I DRIVE A DODGE STRATUS.

(Ted leaves)

FS: Well, I thank Ted for answering my Questions on this segment of Back in Black, I’m sure we’ll get his opinions after the Draft and Free Agency starts.

TB: (yelling across the room) NOT A CHANCE IN HELL!

All of this has been totally made up.

Except for the Ales Kotalik bit.





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Things found in the Locker Room Demolition.

Buffalo Reuse is all over this


Unlike most Buffalo Projects, this one got started on time, and hasn’t stopped because of a Lawsuit. Until Tim Tielman finds something historic in this 15 year old building.  But Fracking Sabres on the word, from a guy down the street who knows someone in the demolition crews Brother, has learned some interesting things were found while tearing things down.

  • A hardest working team in hockey hard hat
  • The 5 for 25 contract between Golisano and Chris Drury
  • Bucky Gleason’s Drury/Briere shrine
  • Harry Neale’s Whiskey Stache
  • Harry Neale’s Bourbon Stache
  • Jason Dawe
  • Rudy Pikuzinski’s mullet
  • 1999 Buffalo Sabres Stanley Cup Champion Tshirt
  • For a good time Call Alena Hasek scribbled on bathroom wall
  • Ron Tugnutt’s Glove with a hole in the webbing.
  • Unused Buffalo Destroyers Tickets
  • My blog

I’m sure more interesting items will be found as more work goes on.  And hopefully my blog shakes off the dust. Because hockey is about to get interesting again soon.



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Feasting on the Northeast

The Sabres have made their comeback from the depths of the Eastern Conference, by getting their points, where you should. Your Division.

Yes, the Leafs have won the last two, but it doesn’t erase the years of futility versus the Sabres.

But so far this year the Sabres have gone 14-7-1 against the Northeast. Which is similar to Montreal’s 13-5-2. But you could say the Sabres are still Northeast champs, they just struggle against everybody else

Vs Atlantic  5-9-3

vs Southeast 6-6-2

vs West 9-5-2  (best in division)

So really the West and Northeast they are getting their points. So who do they have left by divison?

Northeast   2  (Toronto, Montreal)

Atlantic  3  (New Jersey, NY Rangers, Philadelphia)

Southeast  6  (Carolina 2x Florida, Washington, Tampa Bay, Atlanta)

West   2 (Nashville Columbus)

The Sabres will have a Southeast battle down the stretch, with Teams battling for playoff positions and teams playing out the stretch. And with 8 of the last 13 games at home. They will have to shake off their poor home record and get with the game.

The longest road trip they have is a back to back in Washington then Carolina. Carolina by then could be out of it, especially if the Sabres beat the Canes on Tuesday. Putting them 6 points back with 12 to go. That’s a tough hill to climb.

Things look good for the Sabres, but if they end how they finish. It won’t look good for the boys in Blue and Gold. They pretty much have to play .500 hockey and they should get in. I hope they play .750 hockey and try for that 6th spot.
It all starts on Tuesday. Beat those Canes.

Win for Rick.

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Mission Statement

As someone in business, a Mission Statement is the basis of any business. If you don’t have one, you lack vision, goals and an Identity. The Sabres are a Business. And they have gone from the “do what it takes to break even” mission, to the one above.
The very vague mission statement, one made from a absentee owner is gone. And have changed to a very specific goal from a hands on owner.  Is there a surprise the team is playing better? The employees got a new boss, who believes in them and wants them to win. The team got a new employee who was a big producer, but has gone stale in his environment. And now has shown immediate results.

6 games 3 goals   6 points.

Can you argue with bringing a point per game player? Imagine if Roy was still healthy?

There is no doubt more changes are coming in the offseason. They are laying the groundwork for attracting free agents July 1st. (I’m sure they’d love a long post season run, but they probably want to get going tearing out walls) I imagine trades during the draft. It sounded during the deadline, Darcy was getting his moves ready to go, come the start of the new year. It’s going to be different Sabre Fans.  I can’t wait for next year already. And this year is only getting better day by day.

We are witnessing a great change Sabre fans.  We have all imagine what we would do if we owned the Sabres. Well we have that guy. And is vision is clear. Win the cup.

The players know. Lets hope they can just produce the goal.


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The Big Picture

People are a bit down after the loss to Carolina last night. You lose your focus when you just base opinion on the team,  if you go game by game.You have to look at the race at the moment in chunks of games. At the start of the night they were 2 points outta of 8th, and 3 points out of 7th. Guess what. At the end of the night they still are. The teams switched. Right now I’d rather be chasing the Rangers then the Canes. Getting points is the most important thing right now. If you’re gonna lose, lose in OT.

So lets pan out, and see things in a bigger light.

8th Place NY Rangers   70 points and 66 games

They gained 3 points on the Rangers in 2 games And have 3 games in hand and after tonight 4 games. The team is ravaged with injuries and slumping badly. I’m guessing the Sabres pass them by Sunday. (Doesn’t mean they will be in the playoffs)

7th Place  Carolina   71 Points   65 Games.

And after tonight they will have 3 games in hand, with 2 games left head to head. They aren’t that great a team, and probably due for a slump. Carolina can be caught. But its going down to the wire. I think.

6th Place  Montreal  77 points  65 Games

I don’t think they can get the Habs. Unless Montreal really swoons, and the Sabres Catch New Jersey fever, 6th place is too far away. But hey why not go for it, 6th place is a good place for the playoffs, because you probably get Tampa, and Tampa is not ready for the show.

I would mention the Leafs, but you can’t worry about those behind you.  But they are surging right now. So they are one of the teams fighting for the 2 spots in the playoffs.

If 91 points is the magical amount to make the playoffs. (On average)  The Sabres have 19 games left with 68 points. (does quick math) That’s 23 points.  If the Sabres want to get to the 91 point total, they will need to go 11-7-1 or 10-6-3. That’s not unrealistic. With the schedule they have, they can achieve that goal, and probably surpass it.

They are not done. They aren’t even close to being done. They looked done when Roy got hurt. But thanks to the lack of real good teams, the Sabres have climbed out of a hole and are in charge of their future.

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Northeast Division 1st round Drafting through the 00’s

Listening to Mike Schopp while driving home yesterday, a Caller came on and slammed Regier about his Drafting record. I have looked through the drafting during Regier’s tenure, and its up and down no doubt. But not as bad as this guy was claiming. But lets compare it, with the Sabres fellow Divison Mates.

This is only the first round, going into all rounds is way too much work for me.


  • Buffalo:    Artem Kryukov
  • Boston     Lars Jonsson
  • Boston     Martin Samuelsson
  • Montreal Marcel Hossa
  • Montreal Ron Hainsey
  • Ottawa   Anton Volchenkov
  • Toronto  Brad Boyes

Some misses, some hits. But none of these players are still with the team that Drafted them.

Verdict:  Ottawa Wins, Boston Loses


  • Buffalo        Jiri Novotny
  • Boston        Shoane Morrisson
  • Montreal   Mike Komisarek
  • Montreal   Alex Perezhogin
  • Ottawa     Jason Spezza
  • Ottawa    Tim Gleason
  • Toronto   Carlo Coloiacovo

Verdict:  Ottawa: Wins  Buffalo: Loses


  • Buffalo      Keith Ballard
  • Buffalo       Dan Paille
  • Boston     Hannu Toivonen
  • Montreal  Chris Higgins
  • Ottawa    Jakub Klepis
  • Toronto  Alex Steen

Verdict:  Winner: Buffalo?  Loser: Ottawa (But later he was traded for Mike Grier)


  • Buffalo     Thomas Vanek
  • Boston     Mark Stuart
  • Montreal  Andrei Kostityn
  • Ottawa   Patrick Eaves

Verdict: Solid picks  But Winner:  Buffalo  Loser: Toronto, just because.


  • Buffalo   Drew Stafford
  • Montreal  Kyle Chipcura
  • Ottawa    Andrej Meszaros

Verdict :  Winner  Buffalo   Loser Toronto, why not again.


  • Buffalo   Marek Zagrapan
  • Boston   Matt Laskoff
  • Montreal  Carey Price
  • Ottawa   Brian Lee
  • Toronto   Tuuka Rask

Verdict: Winner  Montreal  Loser  Buffalo, ugh Zagrapan.


  • Buffalo:  Dennis Persson
  • Boston   Phil Kessel
  • Montreal   David Fischer
  • Ottawa Nick Foligno
  • Toronto  Jiri Tlusty

Verdict:  Winner Boston, Loser TBA


  • Boston Zach Hamill
  • Montreal  Ryan McDonough
  • Montreal  Zach Pacioretty
  • Ottawa   Jim OBrien

Verdict: No winners or losers on this one yet.


  • Buffalo  Tyler Myers
  • Buffalo Tyler Ennis
  • Boston  Joe Colborne
  • Montreal   Traded 1st for Alex Tanguay (FAILED)
  • Ottawa  Erik Karlsson
  • Toronto  Luke Schenn

Verdict:  Buffalo is the Winner at the moment.  Montreal Loses this one.


  • Buffalo     Zach Kassian
  • Boston     Jordan Caron
  • Montreal   Louis Leblanc
  • Ottawa     Jared Kowan
  • Toronto   Nazem Kadri

Verdict:  Too early to tell.

As you can tell by just comparing the ’00’s to just the division, Darcy probably did better then the rest of the divison. Toronto has not benefited really from their drafts up until Brian Burke took over. 3 Straight 1st round picks of the Leafs, eventually wind up on the Blues.

One thing you can also tell is Darcy had a terrible record with Europeans, its even worse when you look at later rounds through the decade. Its abysmal. I can see why they pulled out of Europe. Or the scouts they used, just scammed them of money. Dennis Persson the boat is still out on, but could turn out to be a solid D Man, when he gets up from Portland, or traded.

Darcy’s  recent drafts are excellent. Maybe video scouting is the future. The proof is in the picks. We’ll its a long term experiment. But one thing is certain, his drafting record is not that bad. And in fact its getting better.





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Trade Ideas based on nothing.

I love the Trade Deadline, its fun, fast paced and always interesting. People always say its a waste of time, but that’s not true. We all love it, like we love the Draft. Who gets who?It’s like Christmas but in February and you actually don’t get anything.

The rumors leading up are always interesting, because usually the are based on nothing, but speculation and people making stuff up, to drive traffic. Eklund has made this a business model. Would love to see how much he rakes in every year, by just making stuff up

I can make stuff up too. But I will do it on rumors and articles I’ve seen on what other teams need and just pretend that the Sabres are the only team that can fill that need.

Yesterday I saw that Vancouver might be looking for a 4th line center. Mmm. Really?

Rob Niedermeyer anyone? Has cup experience, a center, A 4th LINE CENTER. And he’s a British Columbia Native. Seems like a perfect fit for me. Just send back a 6th round pick, or some Salmon, whatever. You can have him.

Hey its the trade deadline, so its time for the “Lanche to trade John Michael Liles. And since he’s friends with Ryan Miller, he’s gotta come to Buffalo right? Ugh. So if the Sabres were to go get John Michael Liles, what would they give up? I would say Sekera, and a 2nd round pick. You do the favor of removing Liles from the Avalanche Cap, and give them a puck moving defenseman, (sometimes who moves it to the other team) and could use a change of scenery.

Trading away a 2nd Round pick are you crazy?

Ahh, you see it is not our own, but it was acquired by Trading Tim Connolly to the Washington Capitals. (or whoever will take him for a 2nd round pick)

You may say Jon, we just traded 2 centers away. Is Paul Gaustad a 2nd line Center?

Well obviously not. Does that mean we’re trading for Brad Richards? NO! Of course not. That’s crazy. You trade for Paul Statsny. A 1st round pick, Luke Adam and TJ Brennan. I’m not trading Drew Schiestel. And obviously since he was on the Olympic team with Miller, they are obvious friends. Duh.

Are you over the cap with the trades you made?

I don’t know, I didn’t do the math, none of these things are going to happen anyway, so why bother.

What if they do?

Then I am obviously a genius, or Darcy Regier reads this blog and did what I suggested. And then we are all in huge trouble. Because I know absolutely nothing.

Will you be disappointed at the deadline?

No, I don’t expect anything, but the Rangers to ruin their future to trade for Brad Richards, who will sign in Tampa next year anyway.

Well the deadline is days away, but there are 2 games before then, so get your fill of Tim Connolly now, before he’s gone.

No, don’t cry Chippewa Bars, you’ll be okay.





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