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Terry Pegula Exciting Players, Coaches As Well As Fans

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The hearts of Sabres fans all over the world have been aflutter over the past few days with thoughts of their newest crush, Terry Pegula. From his inspiring press conference on Tuesday, to his warm reception with the French Connection at the arena last night, Pegula has so far done no wrong. His genuine enthusiasm for the organization and willingness to win has sparked the flames of fan-dom and has made these last few days feel like the beginnings of a new season.

After listening to yesterday's interviews, it's obvious that the Sabres players and coaches are feeling the same way.

I've seen more players smile and laugh while talking about their new owner these last three days than during the entire rest of the season - even Lindy Ruff cracked a winning smile during his press conference last night. Pegula's exuberance has spread throughout the locker room, starting with his press conference where Patrick Kaleta said he was "Getting all jacked up just listening to him talk," -- it should be duly noted that Kaleta was stifling the giggles while relaying this information.  

The energy translated to the game last night, where the Sabres could feel the buzz in the arena, even before the game. Said Lindy Ruff, "I felt nervous all day long. I was excited, but I was nervous. I wanted to make sure the team performed well today. I wanted to get a win." A smiling Ryan Miller was feeling it as well, saying about Terry Pegula, "Yeah, he's excited. It's definitely a good energy having him around, and it's nice to see him happy with the effort."

Pegula excited everyone (including himself, as he almost fell over) by having the French Connection skate out to join him at center ice for a ceremonial puck drop with his two sons. "We got surprised when the French Connection boys showed up," continued Miller. "It was nice for the fans to see those three together, and anytime we can talk with them is a nice treat for us, too."

Thomas Vanek's excitement spilled out in a blog post yesterday. The newly-minted assistant captain went as far as to write of Pegula, "He really is the best thing that could have happened to the club and the fans, you simply can’t put it any other way." 

A post-game interview with an effusive Jason Pominville summed everyone's feelings up nicely. "These last couple days have been just great days for the organization, the fans and the Pegula family. "

Great days, indeed.