For the first time since January 24, 2013, the Buffalo Sabres can look at the standings and see themselves with more wins than losses.
For real, this is not a joke. This is not a test.
Take a minute to let that soak in.
People might say that this is not such a big deal, with the record only being 2-1-0, but this should be considered a huge accomplishment.
We are talking about 2,084 days in a row that the Buffalo Sabres had not had more wins than losses in the standings.
Looking at a number makes it seem even more unreal.
Five years, eight months and fifteen days – you can exhale, the streak has now been broken.
Think about it – Jack Eichel has never had a winning record as a member of the Buffalo Sabres. For some perspective, Eichel was 16 years old and played for the U.S. National Development Team in the USHL.
Again, it seems so absurd to be making such a big deal about such a minor victory but let me be the first to rudely remind you – have you been living under a rock for the last half decade?
This mini-accomplishment serves as a reminder that the Buffalo Sabres have been the definition of bad for way too long.
We can jump into a time machine here to see more about the last time the Sabres were above .500.
As mentioned, the day was January 24, 2013. The opponent was Jeff Skinner and the Carolina Hurricanes. The Sabres fielded a team that featured John Scott. He would go on to play a team-low 4:45. A younger Jason Pominville scored two of Buffalo’s three goals and the other goal went to fan-favorite Cody Hodgson.
What a team that was.
Ok, wake back up now – we’re back to 2018.
This young, talented squad can use this early-season accomplishment to continue to build themselves toward their ultimate goal of getting back to the playoffs.
For almost every player on this roster, the playoffs are like a foreign language.
Players are able to play to what they know. If a team has been to the playoffs, they know what it takes.
On the other hand, a young team often finds themselves playing above their heads because they simply do not know any better. This is where a young, hungry Sabres squad can find themselves this season.
Monday’s victory against the defending Western Conference Champion Vegas Golden Knights is another step in the right direction.
By no means are people placing down a deposit on playoff tickets but there no longer is that black cloud from the former regimes.
It is like the Buffalo Bills breaking their playoff-less streak last season. This season might not be better than the last season but that streak is set back at zero.
In football they trust the process. With this hockey team, we’re all about setting the ship full sail toward the playoffs.