In a recent game recap, O-Town Sabre had essentially the perfect response to the tanking argument, with a good point on both sides about fancy stats as well. As Bill Nye would say, please consider the following, and remember, we're all on the same team. Let's make sure we get through this together.
It's not just the fancy stats, though. It's all the stats that point to the Sabres being worse than their record says. When it comes down to it, the point totals at the end of the season speak for themselves, and playoff wins speak for themselves. We're all curious about the future, though, especially with generational talents like McDavid and Eichel on the table. When people start talking about the Sabres making a playoff run, the statistics come out as a way to say, "Hey, slow your roll and check this out."
Obviously, it's impossible to truly predict the future, but predictions need empirical data to have any weight. At this point, about 1/3 of the season has been played. The Sabres sit in 26th place currently. If you want to predict where they'll be in another 50 games, you have to look at statistics of what they've done so far. The statistics don't match up with their record, even in their recent string of play. They've found a way to win despite the statistics saying they shouldn't have, and to me, that's really cool! I like seeing the Sabres win when I watch them. On the other hand, I am a Buffalo sports fan. We've had to learn how to temper expectations, because lets face it, we've been burned before. A lot.
I really want the Sabres to win, and as one of the few anti-tank fans, I'd love to see them make the playoffs this year...but the data tells me that I shouldn't hold my breath. Besides, how friggin' cool would it be to have one of those top two guys in a Sabre sweater next fall? I may be anti-tank, but I'm also pro-good player. Very confusing time for me.
I've seen tankers and anti-tankers getting a bit heated at each other this season, and seriously, you really shouldn't! Anti-tank fans want to see the team do well, and that's ok. Tank fans want to see the team get the top draft pick, and that's ok too. It's a miserable time to be a Sabres fan, we all need to find meaning wherever we can. Ultimately, not a thing any one of us wishes or says will change the results, we're just along for the ride. We all want to see Lord Stanley's Cup in Buffalo, and there's no wrong way to be a fan.
Unless you're a Leafs fan. Those guys are idiots.
by O-Town Sabre