Simply enough, I’m ecstatic.
It’s an unbelievable feeling to see your favorite hockey team change hands to a man like Terry Pegula. A true testament to Mr. Pegula’s character is when he choked up when he announced that former Sabres great, Gilbert Perreault, was his “hero”. When I witnessed that moment, it was hard not choking up myself and it shows the passion that the man has for the Buffalo Sabres.
Too be honest, I was nervous for the Sabres. It feels that the team is often misguided and when they do get close to glory, they fall flat. I don’t know why and I don’t know if it is because of the owners, the management or just not having the right players, but there is often a ominous feeling surrounding the Buffalo Sabres and now it feels as if that ominous fog has lifted slightly.
The beautiful thing about Mr. Pegula owning this team is a known passion and the willingness to win. Mr. Pegula even went as far as saying, “Starting today, the Buffalo Sabres reason for existence is to win Stanley Cups.” Now, that is a bold statement if I’ve heard one. The thing is, no owner wants to lose and every owner would like to win the Stanley cup, but many keep a watchful eye on their financial commitments– an area Tom Golisano was very aware of; however, Mr. Pegula put it bluntly saying “I want to run the team to win the Stanley Cup, if I want to make money, I will go run a gas mill.” Another confidence building moment by the new owner of the Buffalo Sabres.
Sure, the pessimist in me, which goes hand-in-hand with being a Buffalo native, asks “well, why should I believe him?” Well my optimism overrides my pessimism greatly when hearing the man speaks so emotionally and confidently. Maybe it’s naivety, but then, who cares, I want to be naive. Mr. Pegula isn’t here to make a dime like Tom Golisano was. Mr. Pegula isn’t here to build a resume either. Mr Pegula is here to own a hockey franchise and make them winners– and that is a feeling us in Buffalo have forgotten. We are starved for a winner and championship. AAA baseball and Indoor Lacrosse championships are cute, but we want the real deal here and that is something that our new owner is promising.
I could go into all the details about the press conference, but I guess it would be simpler if I just posted a link to where you can find the videos and I do recommend watching them because they are emotional, regardless of your team loyalty.
Although this is a very specific article, it is something that needs to be said and watched because it is a huge moment in NHL and Sabres history. Check out the videos here and check out sabrenoise.com for continuing coverage of the Pegula saga.