Welcome to Frank Discussions. Formerly known as rants, this is the place we’re going to get down to the nitty gritty. It won’t always be pretty but man it will feel good. Like always, it’s my opinion and you might not always agree. That’s cool with me, just don’t be a dick about it. It’s also a semi-shoutout to some of my favorite Franks out there. They know who they are.
Let’s have a frank discussion about Buffalo sports. It’s been a ROUGH ONE, guys. I was right there with you, though not always physically, as our teams shit the bed particularly heavily this past season.
Where do we even start? We know it’s bad. It’s not entirely surprising to end a whole Bills season at 6-10. It’s actually pretty normal and after the anger subsides, we’re good at taking it all in stride, rebuilding our faith during the off season, and getting fresh and upbeat come season opener time. We’re resilient like that. HOWEVER- after getting rid of the majority of the Bills’ coaching staff last season, and hiring (ha) most of the Syracuse University football team, we were ready for something new. I was among the skeptics of Doug Marrone, and clearly, I wasn’t wrong to feel that way. Nothing changed. Well, that’s not entirely true. There were moments of promise, and it’s those moments that will help rebuild that faith I mentioned above for 2014/2015.
But now, the game has changed forever. Ralph Wilson died, and nothing is certain anymore. The day it happened, I was miserable. Not because Ralph Wilson is gone (I believe he had a great life and damn, he was 95,) but because he left us with this uncertainty. I was kind of mad at him for that. Like when most anyone passes away, Ralph was promoted to saint status, and the majority of Bills fans threw him up on a celebrated pedestal as the savior of Buffalo, New York. I just want to be real. While he was alive, there were ways to ensure the Bills franchise stays in Buffalo, but Ralph didn’t make those arrangements. Now we have to deal with Bon Jovi, Donald Trump, and a bunch of other clowns vying for the title of owner. It’s a whole new bag of stuff to argue about on social media. It’s all just another miserable distraction from the main point: can the Bills ever have a winning season again? Throw in a side of #prayersforJK and unpaid Jills and you have a recipe for severe Buffalo sadness.
I’m admittedly less in tune with the Sabres than the Bills. Being away, it’s hard to catch every single one of 800 games. Or 82, same thing. I was not immune to the anger and frustration of every person live-tweeting every damn game. That’s a lot of live-tweeting to sit through. So much anger. All I know is like the Bills, we saw glimmers of hope. We welcomed home Pat LaFontaine and Ted Nolan. Soon after, we lost Pat LaFontaine and some other coaches and assistants. Is this for the better? Who knows? (I don’t, but maybe you have some insight there.) We said goodbye to Ryan Miller who, despite being imperfect, (how DARE HE,) was an immensely talented goalie and all-around good guy. Our season was appalling at 21-51-10; we finished last in the standings. Then, to add deep, deep insult to injury, we lost the NHL Draft Lottery to the Florida Panthers. Guess what? I didn’t even know there was such a thing as a draft lottery. And it sucks that we came in 2nd, I learned that quickly. Are you properly depressed yet?
We’re second in the East (8-9) as of 4/24/14. Meh. It’s something.
You’re on your own there. I don’t do baseball.
Here’s what I will say. It’s frustrating times a million to lose all the time. I can’t even really imagine what it would be like to follow a team that always wins. I bet it’s boring. There is something about being the perennial underdog that makes us special. I like being an underdog, because it means all that much more when things start looking up. You can be angry, and hateful, and in disbelief about the amount of stupidity floating around in our local sports scene, and you’re not wrong. But really, what good is that doing? Maybe we could all appreciate that we DO HAVE sports to bitch about. I just spent a year living in a place that is supposedly obsessed with sports such as hockey, yet their only opportunity to participate is a junior league full of 17-year-old players. And they’re happy with that. I do believe that someday, at least one of our sports teams will succeed. And when you start feeling bad, just remember- there’s always Cleveland. Those poor saps.