Bucky and Sully - The Buffalo News
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I'd hate to come off like some bitter, beer-guzzling fool who knows nothing about hockey -- I mean, why would any self-respecting columnist want to say anything negative about the Sabres at this magical juncture in franchise history? I suppose I should emphasize the fact that Golisano's guys have games in hand on most of their Eastern Conference competitors and still have …

I hate to say "I told you so", but it's hardly a shock to hear that Anthony Hargrove has been suspended for a year by the NFL for yet another substance abuse violation. Back in the summer, when Hargrove got a four-game suspension -- on the heels of his altercation with Rochester police outside a bar -- I said the Bills should cut him. They presume to have a high …

Niagara's Charron Fisher is the nation's leading scorer, and a top candidate for MAAC player of the year. But the player who really caught my eye in Friday night's game was Canisius freshman Tomas Vazquez-Simmons. Vazquez-Simmons, a 6-7 forward, was all over the floor. He's the most athletic big man the Griffs have had since the Barley-Wise-Meeks days. He fouled out with 1…

Not surprisingly, the Bills stayed in-house and elevated quarterbacks coach Turk Schonert to the job of offensive coodinator, replacing the departed Steve Fairchild. It's not an inspiring move, but I'm willing to give Schonert the benefit of the doubt. He's been coaching quarterbacks for 12 years and was probably overdue to get his first shot at running an NFL offense.Scho…

Brian Campbell told the media Monday morning that he will no longer negotiate with the Sabres during the regular season. This is ominious news indeed. It's unlikely that Campbell will re-sign with Buffalo. Once players decide to test the waters of unrestricted free agency, they rarely stay with their original teams. Suffice it to say, we saw how it works last summer with D…

Once again, a Wade Phillips-coached team comes up small in the playoffs. I can't say it was a surprise to see the Cowboys upset by the Giants, or that Dallas seemed confused at the end of the game. The Cowboys had to burn a timeout in the final minutes because they couldn't get the right personnel on the field. They were penalized for an illegal formation. Giants linebacke…

Now that Russ Brandon has been elevated to the top of the Bills' management chain, both of Buffalo's major sports franchises are in the hands of men who took unconventional routes to the top. Neither Brandon nor the Sabres' Larry Quinn came up through the ranks of their sports. Neither had a background in player personnel. But now Quinn and Brandon are in charge of the foo…

The UB men's basketball team will play its first home game in six weeks Saturday night against Akron, one of the top contenders in the MAC. Akron is 11-3, including an 83-81 loss in double overtime last week at Dayton, which is ranked 17th in the nation by the AP and is 6th in the RPI rankings. Akron went 26-7 a year ago, although the Zips were snubbed by both the NCAA a…

No wonder Lindy Ruff was reluctant to put Thomas Vanek out for the shootout on New Year's Day. Vanek flat-out choked on his shootout try against the Devils in Tuesday night's loss. First, he almost lost the puck initiating his rush. Then he made a half-hearted flick of the puck on Brodeur. He came up very small in the big moment. And Ryan Miller hasn't distinguished hims…

It's nice to see the baseball writers came around and put Goose Gossage in the Hall of Fame. Gossage's ability to pitch multiple innings with the game on the line separated him from today's muddled group of one-inning closers. It'll be harder in future years to make a case for closers who pitched only 75-80 innings in a season. Let's hope they come to their senses next y…

60 Minutes had three compelling interviews on Sunday night: A strongman, Pakistan President Pervez Musharaff; a hit man, former Boston mob guy John Martorano, and an aspiring con man, Roger Clemens. Clemens, speaking with aging icon Mike Wallace, insisted that he was never injected with steroids and HGH by his former trainer, Brian McNamee, as alleged in the Mitchell Repor…

Well, we're into the New Year and I have yet to blog on the NBA. This isn't for a lack of interest. I covered the NBA in the glory days of the 1980s and still follow it as closely as I can. For pure hoop entertainment, I'll take it over a regular-season college game any time -- though I still call the NCAA Tournament the greatest event in sports. The pro game isn't as comp…

Remember the days when people talked about the Sabres as a team without stars? Judging by the latest NHL stats, this year's team might be reverting to its old identity. The Sabres have no one in the top 60 in scoring as of Wednesday. Jason Pominville, the leading scorer, has 31 points and is tied with several other players for 61st. Thomas Vanek? He has 22 points. He's n…

I was caught off guard Monday to learn that Marv Levy's stint as general manager was capped at two years from the start. At least, that's what Levy told the players in his farewell address -- and what he told the media in a prepared release. At no point during the last two years was there any indication that Levy's stay as GM was a defined two-year arrangement. If I had kn…

Right to the end of his tenure as the Bills' offensive coordinator, Steve Fairchild coached scared Sunday. I know the Bills don't have enough weapons. It's obvious they could use a legitimate No. 2 receiver and a good tight end. But there's no excuse for this team's chronic inability to score touchdowns in the red zone. It might be a good idea to actually throw the ball in…