Sun Nov 14 12:29am EST
The Buffalo Sabres entered Saturday night's game against the Washington Capitals with an embarrassing 0-6-1 home record. That led to one Sabres fan placing a banner above Section 304 in HSBC Center during home games that read: "FANS SHOW UP ... WHY DON'T YOU?" It's a banner that led to this interesting fan protest before the game:
Sort of hard to tell what you're looking at here, so allow reader Reusty2k5 to explain:
This picture (sorry for the cell phone quality) was taken at tonight's Sabres vs Capitals game. Pre-game ritual includes a large sabres flag being passed around the 300 section. As soon as it crossed a sign reading, "The Fans show up, why don't you?" fans turned the flag upside down (international sign of distress). Excellent fan protest.
Nice. Moves like this made the Sabres cognizant of the fans' frustration entering the game; in fact, when it ended with a thrilling 3-2 victory in overtime, Coach Lindy Ruff said "we owe the fans a few."
Said Vanek after the game: "At first I had it in the corner, I wanted to skate it up. He hit my stick, and I lost the puck, it came out of the zone. I picked up good speed. I think two of the guys changed. I took a stab at it, it went in. It was nice."
Said a frustrated Capitals goalie Braden Holtby(notes) after the game, to Capitals Insider: "That's an easy play for me. ... I just have to go for it and I hesitated. I guess it's a learning move, usually I wouldn't do that. I don't know why I hesitated, maybe because it was Vanek I thought he might do something else, but it's a play I just have to go on."
Big win for the Sabres to break the home losing streak. Now, does the banner come down for the next home game?
UPDATE (11/14): 'SabresCutie', who made the banner, sees things differently than our on-site reporter.
From SabresCutie on email:
I'm not sure what Reusty2k5, who sent you the photo was drinking, but some of his facts are off. First, the fan flag is always done in the 100 levels. This is only the 2nd time it has been in the 300 level. Second, I could almost guarantee the flag went sideways in section 302 because of the drunks and Caps fans sitting up there, who have no clue how to pass the flag. I don't know anyone up there who would have had the brains to turn the flag upside down as distress, but nice imagination from Reusty2k5.
So there you go.