WAYBACK WHEN (LGS) — This week we release the first two of 11 nominees for Greatest Moment in Buffalo Sabres' History. Keep watching throughout the season as we release more moments on our way toward a vote that will determine the final order. If you want to suggest a nominee, email us. Nominees 3 and 4.
April 14, 1996, Memorial Auditorium
The Sabres have beaten the Whalers, 4-1, Seymour Knox has said goodbye to the Aud, and to us, the banners have been taken down in dramatic fashion and skated off, Marine Midland Arena-bound, the horn has blasted one last time after Pat LaFontaine slips the puck into the ceremonial empty net. Suddenly, the lights are off. The Aud, the building where the Sabres — and a lot of us — grew up, is gone. Then it happens. One final magical moment in a place whose history is filled with so many. A stirring chant of "Let's Go Buffalo" crisply punctuates the air, the words shouted in unison with such passion the fans seem to think they can bring back Gilbert Perreault for one more breakaway goal. Fans cling to the Aud as the words "Thank you, fans" are cast on the darkened ice. But the chant, like the Aud itself, finally fades out and goes silent. A nostalgic, bittersweet night to say "farewell, old friend."
May 14, 1998, Molson Centre, Eastern Conference semifinals
The Montreal Canadiens have never been swept on home ice in their long history — until this night. The Sabres build a 3-1 lead and hold on in the third period to win their seventh straight playoff game. Dominik Hasek makes 37 saves and continues his brilliant play in a series in which he steals Games 1 and 3, setting up Geoff Sanderson and Mike Peca to win them in OT. The win proves wrong Canadiens' forward Martin Rucinsky, who called the Sabres "an average team with a great goalie" and puts the Sabres in the conference finals for the first time since 1980. Matthew Barnaby continues his amazing turnaround by scoring his fifth goal of the playoffs to give the Sabres a 1-0 lead. "Well, we are still an average hockey team," said Barnaby, grinning through a cigar. "But we're an average hockey team going to the third round." The win has fans dreaming of a Stanley Cup for the first time in ages.
Suggest a Moment:
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