A Thought on Booing

by Ryan

Danny Briere got booed tonight.

It was something I had hoped would not happen. Everyone is going to have an opinion on this, but I think there is something that I should address with the whole booing thing:

What exactly did Danny Briere do to us?

Miro Satan was a jerk on the way out, and we boo the crap out of him, even now. Jagr has always been a douche, and Chara is a neanderthal. All understandable, and even necessary at times. Still, all of these can be seen as petty and baseless in the right mind.

So again, what did Briere do to us? Besides, you know, give us the best offensive seasons of his career, some clutch goals in important games, and be willing to negotiate with Buffalo before going on the free agent market?

The fact of the matter is this: the Sabres lowballed Briere with their offer before July 1st. It wasn’t an error in judgement, it was a calculated move that showed they “tried” to get both stars. Quinn and Darcy picked Drury as their keeper and pushed hard while still giving Danny an “offer” that turned out to be a good $4 million short.

If you are going to boo, go find Larry Quinn’s house and have at it when he takes out his recycling bin. He’s your target.

Danny Briere owes nothing to us. He is a hockey player on another team, and regardless of the good memories and well wishes, he doesn’t have to root for us doing anything. That certainly doesn’t mean we should boo him, though.

How does a player like Pat Kane get vocal fellatio just for growing up here while Danny Briere gets booed? Both players play with other teams for big money, and while one player is celebrated just for being born in the area code the other one is hounded for not playing within it his entire career. I’m not saying we should have shipped in Briere’s grandfather, but the least we could do was not act like he slapped our sisters on the way out of town.

There is such a thing as a boo not meant for a player. Penalty calls are an example of this. If a questionable play, say a hook or interference isn’t called for your team, then a similar play is whistled down against, many fans boo. The booing isn’t against that particular play, but the first one that didn’t get called. What is being ridiculed is not the penalty (which in most cases is a good call) but the lack of consistency.

However, I don’t think that is the case with Briere. People actually seem mad at him for leaving, even calling him a sellout or knocking his huge contract. Again, it seems trivial to blame him for taking a $10 million/year deal. Just like Vanek, how can you not sign that deal when it’s offered?

The point is, Daniel Briere is a good hockey player. He is going to score goals, and they won’t be on our side of the scoreboard. This happens all the time, folks. Players switch sides every year, and with free agency it is only going to get worse. It’s business, and if you want to kill a guy for doing what’s best for his family, that’s your problem.

Some other thoughts on a great game at HSBC tonight:

– Peters fought Cote like a drunken midget attacks a package of twinkies: clumsy and off balance. Not a good effort from Petey.

– Has anyone else noticed Jaro is in a contract year playing really well lately? Some big hits and great looks in the offensive zone. Thank God the D is coming around. (Oh, that’s Campbell that’s a UFA come July? Wow. Could have fooled me…)

– Scottie Upshall is a pussbag. It was nice to see his clock get cleaned. Hey Scottie, when you turn twelve ask your parents if you can drop the “ie” from your first name. You sound like a terrier.

– The short list of former Sabres you should boo over Danny:

Mike Grier (commitment to winning)
Slava Kozlov (Achilles made of tissue paper)
Andy Delmore (wherever he is…)
Hasek (If you don’t know, go home)
Cory Sarich (Won a Cup with Tampa, Croatian)
Morris Titanic (Celine Dion)

I’m open to suggestions…

– This game was a huge win for the Sabres. Two points is always nice, but to see them overcome some adversity, play well the majority of the game, and dictate a lot of the physical play shows some versatility this team has lacked at most points this year. Putting some old demons to rest in Briere and Biron may also help with confidence issues they have at times.

After the game Campbell talked about being back to playing “Sabres hockey”, which is a good sign any way you look at it. This team can be good. Not great, good; and tonight they showed it. That just may be enough to make some noise when everything is said and done.

Man oh man do I love home and home series. Let’s do it again Saturday at 7.

One Comment

  1. Katebits

    I actually don’t think that the booing was anger directed towards Briere. I think it was just first opportunity that the Sabres fans had to react to the entire free agency debacle. There is so much emotion surrounding Briere and Drury, it would be impossible to ignore him out there- but it’s also impossible to cheer for him. It was just a release of emotion, not concentrated rage towards Briere. At least that’s what I think.