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(Read this post and try not loving AO. I DARE YOU.)

Guys, I think I might love Alex more than Derek right now, and that’s even after Derek’s two-goal, three-point night. Yeah.

(But wasn’t that a great game???? I was very impressed with that. It seemed like it was the only game thus far, or at least in a long time, that the Sabres have put in a solid effort for the whole game. And it was good to see Roy, Miller, Vanek, Pominville, and Stafford step up and fill up the score sheet. Alright, my heart is too full of rainbows and butterflies to talk hockey, so we’ll talk Alex instead.}

BUT DON’T YOU DARE JUDGE ME. DON’T YOU DARE. I have a legitimate reason to be in love with AO.

FROSTEE!!!!! PLEASE KNOW THAT AS SOON AS MY MOTHER TOLD ME THIS STORY, YOU WERE THE FIRST PERSON I THOUGHT OF (hence, the note I left on your wall). Just please don’t die on me… I need someone to search Ovie with me when the Caps are in Buffalo….

STORY TIME!!!!!!!!

Okay, so my mom and I were walking out of work last night (yes, I work with my mother), and she goes, “Okay, listen to this!

So I listened. And this is what I learned:

Our supervisor, Betty, is like, in her mid 70’s. She’s pretty awesome, and she’s got a son in his late 40’s/early 50’s, who has real bad MS. What I didn’t know is that her son is a hockey fanatic.

I guess he used to play hockey when he was younger, and was friends with Danny Gare and some of the other Sabres from that era. But since his MS has gotten so bad, and considering his age, he and his friends have stopped playing hockey, but have taken up competition through a fantasy league.

Now, Betty’s son bleeds blue and gold, more so than I do, which is a lot. But his favorite player is Alexander Ovechkin. Not surprisingly; I mean, he has amazing skill, and I honestly think he’s the best player in the league (Crosby, who? Malkin, who?). Anyways, he has Ovie on his fantasy team.

A while back, he writes a letter to AO, just briefly explaining his situation, where he’s come from and what he’s become, and told Alex that he loves his game, blah, blah, blah, and basically just says something along the lines of “if you wouldn’t mind, I’d love it if you could send me an autographed picture of yourself.”

So a good amount of time goes by, and Betty and her son never heard a thing. Until the other day.

The phone rings, and it’s the Sabres calling for him.

(At this point in the story, I’m like, “Please don’t tell me that he met AO! OMGAH He didn’t meet Ovie while the Caps were here did he? AHHHHH!)

Whoever it was said, “Mr. Lawson, the Washington Capitals were in town recently, and I have instructions from Mr. Ovechkin to deliver a package to you.”

(Please excuse me while I AHAHAHALSGKJALWKNG;AKYGOIH AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!! Phew! I’m good, I swear.)

“He is very adamant that this gets to you as quickly as possibly, and made sure to tell us that he will be checking back with us to be sure that it got to you.”

So obviously, Betty and her son jump in the car and drive down to HSBC Arena immediately, and sure enough, there was a package waiting.

Betty’s son opens it up and finds a handwritten letter from Alex himself. The letter goes on to say how his story is very touching, and Alex appreciates the support, blah, blah, blah.

The best part, though? This is how the letter reads: “I don’t have any pictures of myself to send to you, so I hope this will be alright.”

What was “this” you might ask?

An autographed, game-used All*Star jersey.

ALKDSGJLAHGD;LAHFSL;GJALFH I KNOW, RIGHT??

So this is why I love Alexander Ovechkin, because he would give up something so valuable, something so memorable to himself, and something so rare collector-wise, to a person he’s never met, just because of a touching letter. Not only is this story heartwarming to me because it’s a hockey player doing something nice for a fan, but because Alex’s gift made the world for Betty’s son. Ovie isn’t just a good hockey player, he’s a damn good human being, and his act of kindness, which wasn’t really too much for him to do, makes me feel better about humanity in general. So next time I hear someone trashing AO for whatever reason, I’m going to think of this story and know how wrong that person is.

Do you think Sidney or Evgeni would do this for a random stranger, who isn’t even someone from their hometown, the town they play in, or a town they have a personal connection to? I don’t think so.

ETA: After getting numerous e-mails and comments saying I’m a bitch or Crosby-hater, etc, for that last statement, I feel it’s necessary to reiterate something I myself commented on this post. When I wrote that, I wasn’t so much doubting that Crosby or Malkin, or anyone else for that matter, don’t do amazing things for perfect strangers. I know they do, and I’ve heard countless stories of it. A good portion of those stories and experiences, though, are due to extenuating circumstances, such as work done by the Make A Wish Foundation. Now, I’m not saying that those groups and organizations aren’t amazing, because they are, and I applaud the guys for working with such foundations. My point was that Alex has no connection whatsoever to Buffalo. He’s not from Buffalo, and my supervisor’s son isn’t from Russia, and doesn’t live in the Washington area, nor did he meet AO through a charitable organization. He approached Ovie and asked for an autographed 8×10 picture. Alex went above and beyond what was necessary and made this guy’s life. It’s no secret amongst my friends and I that I don’t care much for Crosby and Malkin, but hey, even if my worst enemy were to do something like this, I’d love him too. I’m not trying to step on any toes or ruffle any feathers, so I could really do without the criticism and the judgement. All I wanted to do was share a heartwarming story..

Seriously, though? I respect Malkin and Crosby for their skills and what they do for the game, and also what they do in the community. Is it wrong that I happen to like Ovechkin more? No. This is America, and it’s a free country. I admit some of my statements come off as whatever they may, and I can live with that, but I’ve come out and explained what I meant. That being said, you can stop with all of the proof that Crosby and Malkin are just as good, if not better, than Ovechkin. They’re nice stories to hear, yes, but I could stand to hear these stories without the putting down of Alex, and the exalting of Sid and Evgeni. And that might make me sound like a bitch, but so be it. I like to hear stories about any person, not just Ovie, doing great things for other people, and one good dead by the president does not make a good dead done by a regular person any less special. Get what I mean?

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Okay, Sabres. You’ve had your fun. And by fun, I mean toying with the hearts of countless people throughout Western New York, Southern Ontario, and across the country.

AND WE DON’T APPRECIATE IT.

In fact, it’s downright despicable. I really don’t care for how you’ve been playing, at all. Goaltending? Needs to be better. Consistent, but yet, needs to be better. Defense? Don’t even get me started. Offense? Ditto.

First of all, DEREK ROY I TOLD YOU THAT YOU CAN’T BE FRIENDS WITH ANYONE. Not the coach who led you to the Memorial Cup, no one. Know why? Because he coaches Gregory Campbell. YOU CAN’T BE FRIENDS WITH HIM. Wanna know why? Because he could have single-handedly beat you last night. That’s why.

Anyways…

I mean, something is obviously wrong in the locker room. I, for one, don’t think it’s Lindy Ruff’s fault. The guys don’t have it in them. I don’t know why, but they just don’t. Somehow, though, I honestly feel like management might call for Lindy’s head. But I don’t think Regier would allow Ruff to be axed; they’ve been together too long, and they were together when this team didn’t make the playoffs, what, three seasons in a row? Regier, as we are all too well aware, is not one to jump the gun, so I really believe that Ruff’s job is safe, and that’s fine by me, because he is an elite coach.

That being said, I’ll refer to my comment about the guys just not showing up. What’s my solution to that? Make some phone calls to Portland. Get Nathan Gerbe on a plane ASAP. If I were Lindy, I’d stick with the plan of benching guys. I’m still on the Bench Derek Roy Bandwagon. He most definitely needs to play better (and obviously my theory of embarrassing him didn’t work as well as I had hoped). But seriously. Rotate Gerbe in for the guys we are very much underachieving this year. Oh, wait… That’s pretty much everyone except for Vanek, and I’ll throw MacArthur in there (strictly because of his numbers) and Mancari (because he’s played pretty well). And like I said, don’t even get me started on the D. Seriously, bench them all. Play Paetsch and Weber in Lydman and Tallinder’s spots for a few games, and then in Sekera and Spacek’s, and then Numminen’s. I won’t throw Rivet in there because he’s been battling injuries all season, but still.

SOMETHING HAS GOT TO GIVE.

We obviously have to find what’s wrong with this team, and we have to find it now. Because as it stands, playoff-wise, we’re already on the outside. And I’m not so sure I can take another Sabre-less late spring.

Like I said to Anne today, I seriously want to jump a plane to Tampa when I drop my brother off at the airport this morning. I really want to go down there, smack every single Buffalo Sabre across the face, and then proceed to bawl my eyes out and throw a hissy fit to make them see just how much their sucking affects me.

Oh, my God. If I talk about them any more I think I actually might start crying. Either that, or my couch pillows and other household objects may suddenly be able to fly…

So, I think, instead of talking about those men who shall not be named (Sounds like Harry Potter, eh? I think I might use Kim’s method: ******.), I think I’m just going to post ridiculous pictures of them, and talk about my boyfriends from the other teams.

Here goes.

So, in last night’s game, my Florida boyfriend, the beautiful David Booth did what? Nothing. Oh, that’s right, because he didn’t play, because he has some shoulder injury.

WHY IS IT THAT THE ONES I LIKE ALWAYS, ALWAYS, ALWAYS GET HURT????

But Marcus Naslund scored for the Rangers, neither of my goalie BF’s played in the Islanders/Caps game, both Staal brothers let me down in their matchup, Shea Weber netted a goal, Todd Fedoruk did as well, and that’s it. Well I guess I pretty much got stood up across the board. But thank you, Marcus, Shea, and Todd, for trying to cheer me up. But, alas, it didn’t work.

At least Tampa lost… But, wait, I don’t think that will matter since they absolutely steamrolled us when they were up here last.

Umm, so a picture…

So I lied. I can’t look at my pictures of the ****** without getting all kinds of upset. Well, I’ll put up a picture of one of my guys who didn’t let me down last night:

The Pirates couldn’t possibly let me down last night because they didn’t play.



In fact, they only made me love them more.

While the Sabres are out making millions by playing terribly and galavanting on the beach and Chippewa, the most adorable hockey players every (coughTHEPIRATEScough) are doing charity work. Yeah, that’s right, and making the days of countless children, grown men, and adoring women.

Three of the four Mikey-Poo’s in Portland (Card, Funk, and Kostka), along with Derek Whitmore unveiled the newly remodeled Dorothy Elizabeth room at Gary’s House, a Ronald McDonald-esque house, in Portland. They also decorated for Christmas.

And then Tim Kennedy (who looks like a child himself) and Jimmy Bonneau did a signing.

The Pirates are my new hockey loves.

Take that, Sabres. Oh, and Derek Roy? I’m breaking up with you.

I’m not going to say “I told you so,” but, wait, yes I am–I told you so. I just knew that the Sabres would waltz back into HSBC Arena and not take the Sens seriously enough. Okay, maybe they did take them seriously, and yes, I realize their travel schedule was nuts (I figured it out that they probably didn’t get in to Buffalo until 6am-ish Monday morning. No thank you.), but excuses are excuses. And I don’t want to hear them.

And yes, I know we had to lose in regulation sometime, BUT DID IT HAVE TO BE YESTERDAY, LIKE THAT, TO OTTAWA??!!?? You killing me, Sabres. Plain killing me.

I’m not even going to comment on anything about the game except this:

MAX GOT HOSED. What the hell was that? Sure, maybe his shot was a bit late, but in his defense, the initial whistle sounded a he began to wind-up for the slap shot, and it was short and faint. As he connected with the puck, the second, more obvious whistle went. Even if he had taken a late shot, that doesn’t warrant THREE Senators jumping him. FROM BEHIND. Kudos to Mair, Kotalik, and Weber for jumping in there immediately. Mair’s reaction reminded me of those nature shows were the lions are feeding on carcasses. Obvs Adam was the lion and the Senator smothering Max was the carcass.

I don’t even know if I can come up with three Sabres stars… Let’s see…

First Star : Maxim Afinogenov
He had two assists on the night, and he actually was all over the ice trying to make things happen, so, Max, I’m throwing you a bone for Kim’s sake.

Second Star : Clarke MacArthur
Breaking the goose egg is huge in my book. I never like to see my boys go scoreless.

Third Star : Teppo Numminen
I was toying with giving you the second star, Tepps, but you stole Derek’s goal, so I can’t bring myself to do it. But you did get a goal, so there ya go.

And Kim and I were discussing who would get the pigeon last night… I voted for Miller. He didn’t do anything right because he didn’t play, but, by default, he didn’t do anything wrong, either. See where I’m going with this??? Do you understand my logic? Ahhhh it works sometimes!

That being said, do you realize how many of our players were negative last night??? Yuck. (And I just realized that I’m rambling on about the game even though I said I wasn’t going to. Oh well.) Not one guy in blue and gold was in the black, and only six broke even (Kotalik, Numminen, Ellis, Paetsch, Afinogenov, Peters). Nine players were -1, and three were -2. (Derek, I’m extremely disappointed in you.)

And despite how terrible and excruciating that game was to watch, I’m not sure if I’ve ever laughed more at a game. Kim ended up coming over to my house, and we ordered food from Mike’s Subs, and I had already stocked up on Dr. Pepper for myself, Sunkist for her, and chips and Bison French Onion dip. I’m telling you, unless I’m watching by myself, I get the good stuff. But anyways, combine the caffeine and sugar from Sunkist with Kim’s pent-up energy (she has pretty much been a hermit as of late, due to an obscenely large microbiology test looming over her Wednesday)… And I can’t even tell you what was said or done, but I could not stop laughing. At one point, and I believe this was after Pominville missed the wide-open net, she did something, and I was doubled-over in tears. It was fantastic.

The only thing that makes last night salvageable is a picture I found. The other day, in my search for Nathan Paetsch pictures, I actually found quite the variety of guys (that’s how I found that ridiculous picture of Reggie). I was showing her this picture I found of Paul, and a picture of hockey players lined up in their jocks popped up. So that prompted us to recall this post of MJ’s, in which we’re treated to a shirtless Antoine Vermette. I then decided it would be fab-u-lous to see the Sabres like that. Any of them. I’d even see Teppo or Pigeon like that.
But then we recalled our days of Rochester Americans-stalking… Ever since the first game we went to down the 90, we’ve been sitting right behind their bench. I mean, it’s $25, why the hell not? Back to the story… Something happened while we were standing there for the anthem, and Kim and I were laughing about something, so I turned around to say something to her and caught Stefan Meyer staring at me. I was done for when he got that frightened “Omigosh she just saw me” look on his face and do the not-so-subtle-quick-look-away move. Anyways, we had gone to some go kart race thing that the Amerks had last year. We noticed that Stefan had some ink on his arm, and that made me wonder about the Sabres. Do they have ink? But back to Stefan… I was aimlessly looking through the most prominent of Sabres albums on Webshots (dmb2218’s albums) and found this beautiful picture:

He’s mine. My Florida Panthers prospect.

Wait. What?? Did I just say that? Did I just admit that I’m in love with a… with a Panther? Even after my ginormous rant yesterday? Well, friends, yes I did. But in my defense he was an Amerk. He played with Sparky, and with Mark, and with the rest of them… But at the end of the day, he also has played with Gregory Campbell. Alas, Stefan is my guilty pleasure of the AHL. But come on… Just look at him!! Oh, and Kim would enjoy this one:

Drew Larman is a bad-ass mofo.

Drew is Kim’s AHL guilty pleasure, as he too is a Panthers prospect. He, however, has a redeeming factor because he’s from Buffalo. Or at least that’s where he was born… I don’t know.

But see what happens to me when the Sabres are off?? I go on tangents and I stray away. Now I have to go stick my head in the oven or something because I feel guilty. I told you. I have reverse commitment issues. In my relationship with the Sabres, my stance is that they can do whatever, even whoever, they want, as long as they come back to me at the end of the day. And by that I mean as long as they’re Sabres, I’ll love them unconditionally. That is, unless they’re really ridiculous. I used to dislike Petey, but he’s won me back. But I can’t be unfaithful to the Sabres, which is why I feel tremendously guilty. Does that make sense? I doubt it. Whatever though. I’m still going to like him, I just could never be with him because he’s not a Sabre. I’m cheating on the Sabres. And it is oh-so-thrilling, just because they lost last night. =]

And as far as the World Juniors go, I’m a little bit disappointed in the ticket prices. They’re high to begin with, and you know that it’ll sell out immediately, and as soon as they’re up on eBay and StubHub, they’ll be jacked up like crazy. Kim and I decided that we’d just go to the bars downtown and see all the cute youngins, but then I remembered that it’s an under-20 tournament, and they can’t get in the bars… Well, there is a TGIFriday’s on Chippewa…. They serve alcohol…

Oh, and I’m sure you’ve already heard, but some genius (literally, a genius) who I believe is Chris Butler, put a little kid’s pair of hockey skates in the little one’s locker stall up in Portland.

And I’m sorry that you read this. I’m not even sure what I just wrote because I’m freezing, half asleep, there’s something in my eye, and I’m watching Kathy Lee and Hoda talk to three attractive men and another who looks like a bum about sex. I have no attention span this morning…

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