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I’m going to be completely honest with you, friends. I love Brian Campbell. No lie. I’ve told you that before. And it’s not just because he’s a redhead, but I’m not going to go into the depths of my attachment to him, so just know it’s there. Oh, and it’s been there for a very, very long time.

What I am willing to divulge to you, though, is my behavior last year on February 26, 2008. (And I can almost guarantee that I will act in basically the same manner if another of my favorites gets sent packing on March 4th.) I woke up that morning just like any other morning and packed my bag for school, triple checking the battery level on my MacBook. I had TSN’s TradeCenter set to my homepage on Safari, ensuring that I wouldn’t miss a thing.

I drove the 15 minutes to UB’s north campus, and was sitting in Chemistry (one of the few times I actually went before I just stopped going because I had already failed), not paying too much attention to Professor (“Winston”) Churchill, only hitting refresh continuously on my browser. Oh, and all the while, IM-ing Kim, discussing the trades and how I wasn’t too sure if I’d be able to deal if Brian left.

At 11:27 am, my heart dropped and shattered on the lecture hall floor. Literally, this is what I said to Kim: “HE’S GONE. KIMMY, HE’S GONE.”

From then on, I’m not entirely too sure what I did. I know I almost felt like crying, and thankfully I was in one of the last rows of the biggest hall on campus, and it was dark, because Winston likes to use Powerpoint.

But then I discovered Steve Bernier, and I was willing to accept him with open arms, especially with his debut in blue and gold.

Really, though? I miss them both terribly.

The one story I will always remember about Brian Campbell is highly entertaining. Well, at least it was to the 15-year-old me, before I heard about his galavanting ways.

It was late March or early April 2003, and the Dairy Queen in Kenmore had just reopened for the season. My friend and I wanted to go get some ice cream, so we walked the, oh I don’t know, maybe seven blocks down Elmwood to get some.

The topic on everyone’s mind was the SARS pandemic. But it was hitting home for Sabres fans, with roommates Rhett Warrener and Brian Campbell under house arrest/quarantine, because Campbell’s sister-in-law was showing symptoms after coming into contact with SARS patients at the Toronto hospital she worked at. They were shacked up in Warrener’s Kenmore home, not all that far from my friend’s house.

Anyways, while we were standing in line to get our ice cream, who should get in the line opposite ours? Brian Campbell and Rhett Warrener. I’m pretty sure Campbell got a twist in a dish with chocolate sprinkles.

Basically, they could have killed me. Except, neither one of them actually contracted SARS, so I guess that’s alright.

(ETA: In retrospect, I guess I didn’t really do the story justice. I just think it’s funny that, when they might have had SARS, Brian and Rhett are sneaking out of the house, disregarding regulations from the World Health Organization, to go to Dairy Queen and get their ice cream fix. Hmm.)

Even so, Brian, I’ll never boo you. Well, at least not baring unforeseen occurrences. I’m impressed at how you and your Blackhawks have done this season, and I’ll always cheer for you, as long as you’re not playing the Sabres. Hey, I drove my family nuts on New Years Day because all I wanted was for it to be 1 o’clock so that I could watch you in the Winter Classic (even though it was better when you were wearing blue and gold).

Now if we could get Steve Bernier back, I’d be a happy girl.


*****

There is a positively awesome article about Derek Roy in the TBN today, surprisingly written by Bucky Gleason. I knew there was a reason I loved Derek. I mean, for his hockey skills, not his ridiculous off-ice behavior.

*****

About tonight’s game? Well, I’m not going to be watching. I know, I know, that’s outrageous since it’s my one legit change to really watch Brian Campbell and not want him to win this season. But Kim and I are going to see Rent tonight at Shea’s. Totally worth it. So excited.

But I am taping the game, and I’ve already told all of my hockey-obsessed friends and my family not to breathe a word of a score or anything related to this game to me until I finish watching it. Yeah. We’ll see if that actually happens. Not counting on it.

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Thomas Vanek is as hot as a pancake (to steal a Harry Neale comparison) not only is he tied for first in goals with Jeff Carter and Alex Ovechkin (who has unsurprisingly caught up in goals scored) he’s been named to the Eastern Conference All-Star team.

For me the actual All-Star game is boring because we all know it’s going to be a high scoring game with very few penalties, very few hits and no fights (not that I can remember at least). Now that’s not to say that I’m not going to watch it because I will but I’d much rather watch the skills competition which I believe to be the most exciting part of the All-Star break.

Now as Cari said in a previous post we are trying to make this blog less puck bunny and more intelligent hockey discussion which means that I have to curb those puck bunny tendencies that seem to want to surface every time Paul’s name is mention. They include giggling, swooning and making keening noises when someone mentions his name or when he’s on the ice during a game. I lead a sad and pathetic life, don’t judge me. Now just because we’re saying that we’re going to try and make this blog not so puck bunnyish doesn’t mean that it’s not going to be puck bunnyish some of the time because we’re girls with hormones and lots of ’em.

Back to intelligent hockey, now I don’t know if any of you have heard about the live chat that the Buffalo News hosts Thursday mornings but if you haven’t it’s basically a question and answer session when fans send in their questions and Bucky Gleason answers them. One question in particular caught my eye someone asked what was up with Pat K. considering they said he would be out for three weeks after being put in a hard brace for his neck injury and it’s already been two weeks with no word as to a date for a return. Bucky said in response that it’s a ligament in Pat’s neck that has been giving him trouble since being suckerpunched by Denis Gauthier. Correct me if I’m wrong but the Sabres haven’t actually come out and said what’s wrong with Kaleta’s neck so at least now we know it’s not a concussion or something really serious like a cracked vertebrae. The live chat is still up on Buffalo News.com under Sabres Edge for anyone who is interested.

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