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On Jerseys, The Horde, And Appeasement

05/24/10
by

(WARNING: Rambling ahead. Yawn and browse accordingly)

I’ve been in a really good debate with @joefromnyc about the upcoming jersey switch. Originally it began as a debate about Tim Connolly between @joefromnyc, @Katebits, @Chris_TGR, and @BNHarrington but when this tweet popped up, I took notice to the conversation.

See, I kind of hate the Slug. Have never bought anything for myself or my son or my girlfriend with the Slug on it, and with the death of that beast looming this summer, I don’t ever have to worry about it. But for four long years, I sat and loathed looking at it. In the spirit of full disclosure, I did like the Goat and still love those three uniforms, but I was excited for a return to the blue and gold. I wasn’t the only person dismayed to find out the Sabres’ new logo would be a shapeless smear that got focus-tested in Raleigh and Dallas instead of the city it would be seen most in.

I’m not the only one who hates it. A lot of fans are strongly against the Slug, but most who didn’t care for it forgave its existence when the Sabres took the league by storm in the 2006/2007 season. The Sabres had six of the top then highest-selling jerseys that season. An exciting, winning team can cause a region to go into a collective Beatlemania-like frenzy.

I don’t know if it was the looming 40th anniversary of the team, Quinn’s and Golisano’s alleged desire to make a quick buck, or the growing discontent among the fans, but the organization decided to kill off the Slug for the 2010/2011 season. And there was much rejoicing.

The argument I was having with @joefromnyc centers around his belief that Sabres fans will accept whatever is on the ice (specifically Connolly’s terrible post-season performance, or a performance of its ilk) as long as they have a new jersey to buy and wear, and I call heavy shenanigans on that. No amount of gorgeous, vintage-inspired uniforms will be able to sate the angry masses if the Sabres suck it up on the ice. Sure, we’ll all be lovey-dovey with the team when they unveil the new sweaters at Puck Drop 2010, but after that, all’s fair in love and hockey.

(Sorry that took so long to get to the point. I told you I would be rambling. Listen next time, sheesh.)

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