Thursday, May 17, 2012

Sports: Summer Sporting in Buffalo: Derek M

We all have our addictions, and in Buffalo, our addiction is our sports teams.  So let me be the one who gives it too you, let me offer everyone a perspective on sports that is Buffalo from Buffalo.
We are in a unique time of the year, no playing Monday morning quarterback, no talking to the cashier at the corner store about who the Sabres should grab at the deadline.  We are about to start summer in the city that can actually enjoy all four seasons.  Our short and simple conversations about sports last about 30 seconds and end with “we’ll see”.

We’re all holding our breath for the fall, to see if the new front four of the Bills defense can actually put the hurt on Tom Brady and Mark Sanchez like we all hope they can.  Whether or not the Sabres can live up to the expectations they put on themselves last year remains to be seen.  But for now we get to enjoy the “one and done” sporting events and the long, grinding, unending and not too important baseball season, (which is very exciting come fall).

First and foremost,
 in case you live in a cave or go out of your way not to hear Bills news, we signed Mario Williams, the biggest and best defensive free-agent of the off-season!   I, for one, grew up a huge Bills fan but was turned off from the futility of being just that.  I grew up during the glory days of the Bills, also known as the Super Bowl years, and since then I have watched as the Bills have done next to nothing.  I know that over that span there were a few small achievements to get excited for, like trading for Drew Bledsoe (which I was very excited about) or T.O.  The list continues for players who were past their prime or had just never found it.  But this year promises to be different.  The additions on our defensive front are sure to be exciting, if nothing else, and more importantly we sold Buffalo to a guy that had his pick of the litter.  Mario Williams could have gone to any city with a Professional football team and been paid just as much if not more money, but he chose Buffalo.  We have all had a chip on our shoulders for years, and if anything helps that, this is it. 

For now let’s enjoy things like horse racing and baseball, things that don’t (normally) set us off.  We have all put ourselves into this terrible place with our teams never achieving what we want them to.  We can enjoy our summer like few else can, whether we are Yankees, Red Sox, or in my case Indians fans.   Who cares?  It’s not nearly the same as watching the Bills or Sabres, the teams which we have such a close connection to.   They’re ours, and they are the very identity of what makes us “Buffalonians.”  Next year will come and the NFL and the NHL will have another year.  I hope to god we will have teams that are relevant and make it deep into their respective postseasons. 
For the next three months let us enjoy sports without pain, watch Sportscenter without caring, enjoy our summer and expect the intensity, excitement (and shall I say misery) come this fall.  I love Buffalo and I love Buffalo sports.  But for now let’s breathe, let’s take a break from the burden of caring about sports so much it hurts or requires a night at the bar with your best friends when your team plays.
In the next season, I, along with many of you, will hope for a dominant season from the Bills D-line, a Sabres team that performs like we expect, and Zach Parise.  Until then enjoy your summer in Buffalo as much as I will.
-Derek M

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