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Daily Links for Friday, Oct. 8

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HAPPY HOCKEY DAY EVERYONE!!! Opening day of the 2010-2011 Buffalo Sabres season is finally here, and dang if I couldn't be more excited. Not to toot my own horn here, but I'm so excited about today that I think this is the best, most jam-packed Daily Links post I've done in my short time here. Definitely check after the break for all the links you'll need to waste those 8 hours at the office before coming home for game night. So wear your jersey to work, set your ringtone to Hurricane 2000, and put your "Roll The Highlight Film" CD on repeat, because it's opening day, baby!

NHL Preview - The Buffalo News
There are a jillion articles posted here from the News' massive NHL preview on Thursday. I'll be using some of the over the weekend, but if you MUST have them all now, here they are.

Sekera a front-runner to play; Spezza may not - Sabres Edge
Sekera is manning the point on the second power-play unit, almost a sure sign he will play against the Senators. He is joined on the blue line by Jordan Leopold, while Thomas Vanek, Paul Gaustad and Tim Connolly are up front.

WITH MILLER, SABRES BELIEVE ANYTHING IS POSSIBLE - Buffalo Sabres
"Ryan gets a lot of recognition, and deservedly so. I think he’s the key piece to this team," forward Thomas Vanek said. "Obviously, any talk of the Stanley Cup, goaltending is what you need, and we have that." The question for the Sabres is if they have enough everywhere else.

Connolly's glad to make a fresh start - The Buffalo News
Tim Connolly is healthy and looking forward to a big season. But before he gets things started Friday in Ottawa, the Buffalo Sabres center is hoping for good things for his other team as well. His ALDS team, that is.

White: I Think They're Going To Be Good - WGR 550
I'm with Pat White here. I don't see this team not repeating as division champs.

More Sabres News:

DREGER: ANALYZING THIS YEAR'S EXCEPTIONAL CROP OF NHL ROOKIES - TSN
Tyler Ennis is ranked #2 accoding to TSN, just behind P.K. Subban.

Season Premiere - The Goose's Roost
Chris from TGR pens a lengthy season preview.

Starting With a Clean Slate - Top Shelf
Heather ad Derek Roy are starting with a clean slate this season.

10/6 Recap: Happier JGL producing; Fienhage logs first major - SabresProspects.com
Jerome Gauthier-Leduc (+1) posted an assist Wednesday as Rimouski downed Chicoutimi, 4-3. The helper came with the man advantage late in the second period to tie the game 3-3 heading into the break. Alexander Lavoie ('11) potted a pair of goals for the losing side.

Season Previews

Top 10 NHL storylines to watch for 2010-11 season - SI.com
Michael Farber gives us ten themes to watch this year, but he's a bit on the, um, broad side? GOALIES. YOUTH. Yeah, uh, thanks Mike.

2010-11 NHL season: 10 storylines to watch - ESPN
From Carey Price in Montreal to the Sutter brothers in Calgary, Scott Burnside highlights the top storylines to watch this season in the NHL.

NHL 2010-11 Opening Weekend Viewing Guide: Hockey From Helsinki To Edmonton - SBNation.com
The 2010-11 NHL season officially gets underway on Thursday afternoon, with a solid slate of hockey games for fans to watch throughout the weekend. It all start at noon in Helsinki, of course.

Predictions:

WECK’s NHL Predictions, 2010/11 - NickMendola.com
Without further rabble, here is the combined output of the staffs of Riter Radio (Brad Riter, Scott Wilson, Andrew Garrigan) and The Late Nick Mendola (Chris Ryndak, Mike Cline Jr., Nate Foley, Brian Koperski, Mike Wzontek and myself, Nick Mendola).

NHL Season Predictions - who will win the Stanley Cup in 2011? - On the Forecheck
It's an obligatory rite all hockey writers go through at the start of an NHL season...

Prediction City - The Copper & Blue
Western and Eastern Conference predictions for the 2010-11 season.

EA SPORTS NHL 11 Predicts the Vancouver Canucks to end Stanley Cup Drought - EA SPORTS
The game that predicted last spring’s Chicago Blackhawks Stanley Cup victory has called for the same team to be knocked out of the first round of the playoffs this year.

NHL News:

Maple Leafs edge Canadiens in season opener for both teams - TSN
Last season, the Toronto Maple Leafs took nine games to record their first victory. This year, there was no waiting as J-S Giguere made 25 saves to help the Leafs edge the short-staffed Montreal Canadiens 3-2 in the regular season opener for both teams.

Flyers' rookie Bobrovsky impresses - Sporting News
Bobrovsky was calm and collected as the Penguins, playing in front of a fired-up crowd eager to see the home team score the first-ever goal at Consol, peppered him with 15 shots in the first period. He stopped them all.

Canucks Acquire Paetsch From Panthers - Nucks Misconduct
Canucks keep trading with Panthers plus acquiring former Sabres.

L.A. Kings go retro, bring back the purple and gold this season - Puck Daddy
Good news: The Kings' vintage jerseys this season, which will debut on Saturday night in Vancouver, are more purple than gold, as Ryan Smyth and Jarret Stoll showed off on the team's website on Thursday.

Must-win games start in October - THN
The NHL season is underway, but rather than ease into the competition, teams have to start strong to keep their playoff dreams burning.

Bourne Blog: For NHL players, it all starts tonight - Puck Daddy
Tonight started sometime in April, May or June, sometime shortly after the cuts and bruises healed, when the hockey player woke up realized "it's about time to get back to work."

NHL, Spider-Man creator Stan Lee join on new superheroes project - NHL.com
This partnership creates the platform from which to launch Stan Lee's vision for his latest superhero franchise, The Guardian Project, which will encompass the creation of 30 Guardians (one to represent each NHL team) as a new series of superheroes, with a creative concept that organically and authentically incorporates various NHL elements but is not set in the world of hockey.