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11-15-2011, 10:06 AM
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Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: Boston
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Putting the myth of consistent, 60 minute efforts to bed.

I think it's high time we put a certain myth to bed. No team comes out and plays full octane and to its potential for 60 minutes, game in and game out...which is one of the biggest criticisms of the Sabres.

Last night, for large portions of the first and second period, the Sabres looked listless and flat after perhaps the most controversial game since the Neil/Drury debacle. Posters, pundits, and fans called the team soft, questioned their heart, and stated (for the 34958374th time) that there is something deeply wrong with the core.

I bet you'll find similar posts in just about every other team's forum a few times a month. I'm not sure there is any real evidence to back this up, but I really doubt any fan-base thinks their team gives 100% every minute of every period of every game for the entire season. It just doesn't happen. Moreover, I don't even think it's a lack of effort on behalf of players so much as it is the skill level in the league.

The NHL has achieved parity. Any team can beat any team on any given night. Sometimes we will get outplayed. Sometimes we will outplay the opponent. In both instances, fans (and especially those who care enough to post consistently on a message board) will find aspects of the game worthy of criticism if not disdain.

Do the Sabres have problems? Definitely. The defense has been an inconsistent mess. The team certainly isn't physically imposing, aside from a few individuals. Our starting goalie struggled, is concussed, and we largely failed to respond in the immediate. But you know what? Every other team has similar problems. Teams get hot, teams go cold, water is wet.

We can improve. We likely will improve. People need to relax a little bit. It's not even 1/4 way through the season.

Go Sabres.

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