Here's a definition of a tough day at the office: A hockey player scores the first hat trick of his NHL career . . . and he doesn't even get to take a bow for it in front of the home fans.
That's what happened to one of the Sabres on this date. Milt Northrop had the story for The News:
"Perhaps for the first time ever Thursday night a Buffalo Sabres player scored a hat trick at Memorial Auditorium and was not selected one of the game's three stars.
"It was that kind of night for the Sabres in their 7-0 romp over the Ottawa Senators before 12,386.
"Overlooked in the three-star selections was Donald Audette even though he had his first NHL three-goal game and raised his goals total to a team-high 17. Audette's third goal came with 1:35 left in the game and the outcome no longer in doubt. By then the Sabres' pressbox personnel had collected and tallied the media ballots.
" 'I can't worry about that stuff,' Audette said of the oversight. 'Everybody played well. Tough choice.'
"Audette seemed more concerned that his father, Claude, was able to view the game on satellite back home in Quebec.
" 'He's always asking me when am I going to get a hat trick,' Audette said.
"On a night when first star Alexander Mogilny registered a career-high four assists, second star Jason Dawe scored a pair of goals and an assist, and third star Dominik Hasek turned in his third shutout, it was almost excusable that Audette was ignored, even though his hat trick was the first for a Sabre since Derek Plante did it Dec. 1, 1993, against Tampa Bay."
-- Budd Bailey
Sports Ink blog at buffalonews.com/blogs