Tuesday, February 22, 2011

It's a Great Day for Hockey - Part II

The buzz in Buffalo today was reminiscent of the buzz in Happy Valley last September as Terry Pegula was introduced as the fourth owner of the Buffalo Sabres.

I had the pleasure of joining Joe Battista on the journey to Western New York to attend the press conference and Wednesday's game between the Sabres and the Atlanta Thrashers (another team that could soon be on the auction block).

The presser was the lead news on the local morning newscasts, the front page of the Buffalo News and other local papers and, of course, the only topic on the sports radio stations. All of the local TV stations carried the press conference live, giving you an idea of how big hockey is here in the Queen City.

All of us associated with the Icers know of the passion that Mr. Pegula has for hockey. Today, he showed that passion to the Sabres faithful.

His emotional introduction of his family, as well as Sabres legend Gilbert Perreault and other Sabres alumni, spoke volumes. Recounting how he listened to Sabres broadcasts while living in Houston and Pittsburgh in the days before internet broadcasts showed how devoted he is to the Sabres.

In September, Terry said he wants Penn State to be on a fast-track to the Frozen Four. Today, he said he wants to win Stanley Cups - lots of them. I wonder what the over/under is on which comes first?


Here's a sampling of what our favorite member of the Icers family had to say, as well as my allotted one minute with NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman.

I wish that I had known about this news, so that I could have thanked the Commish:
The National Hockey League (NHL) today announced a major agreement with brewers Molson Coors (NYSE: TAP) in Canada and MillerCoors in the U.S.,awarding flagship brand Molson Canadian exclusive League rights in the beer sponsorship category, including the rights to the Official Beer of the NHL® designation, beginning with the 2011-12 NHL season. The deal will span seven years.

Lastly, I had the opportunity to meet a couple of the legendary NHL broadcasters, Rick Jeanneret and Harry Neale.

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