The Buffalo Sabres announced that the game against the Vancouver Canucks on Saturday will be the annual Military Appreciation event that the team hosts. Faceoff is at 1pm, and the game will be dedicated to honoring current and former members of all the military services.
There will be several tributes to armed forces personnel throughout the afternoon as the team and fans acknowledge their great service to the nation. Cliff Benson, Sabres chief development officer and president of the Buffalo Sabres Foundation, noted -
"We owe a tremendous debt to our servicemen and women who have so bravely fought for this great country.
"We hope in some small way, our Military Appreciation game and support of veterans programs conveys our gratitude and appreciation to all of those who have served."
The Buffalo Sabres Sled Vets, a sled hockey team composed exclusively of military veterans, will be on the First Niagara Center ice for national anthems and will conduct the ceremonial puck drop. After the completion of the Sabres game, the Sled Vets will play a sled hockey game against the Ohio Warriors, a military veterans team based out of Columbus, Ohio. The Sabres Sled Vets program and the Buffalo Warriors, a stand-up hockey team comprised of military veterans, were founded in 2012 by the Buffalo Sabres Foundation, Buffalo Sabres Alumni Association and National Fuel.
Sabres captain Brian Gionta will be hosting veterans in his suite for the game. Matt Moulson and Mike Weber will also host troops in their four 100 Level seats and the troops will be honored on the video board during the game as a part of the full-season program. Military members will also receive a 25 percent discount at the Sabres Store on the day.
Zach Bogosian, Jack Eichel, Zemgus Girgensons, Moulson and Weber also visited the Niagara Falls Air Force Base on Wednesday. Go over to the Fanshots section to see assorted pictures from the trip.