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Ice Bowl Ramp Up

December 19, 2007

Yes, I know its not called the Ice Bowl, but calling it the Amp Energy Winter Classic is too long to type. So Ice Bowl it shall be.

The Buffalo News asked the team if they would play the game if weather conditions were like they were in Cleveland for the Bills game. To a man, the players answered yes. As they rightly pointed out, its not called the Ice Bowl for nothing!

The amount of press the NHL is pumping out regarding the game is impressive, and I know its only going to get stronger in the days to come. I was browsing NHL.com this morning, and saw that actor William Fichtner is contributing a blog for the site. I’ve loved William Fichtner since his role in Armageddon, and up through his role on The West Wing.

His first entry is about what to do in Buffalo.

My favorite portion of the blog is the beginning. He hits the nail on the head about what makes Buffalo such a great spot:

So first things first – if you’ve never been to Buffalo, you’re in for a treat. It’s a great city, a great place to go and have a good time. We have good food, good bars, great people, and great sports teams. And just about everyone is a fan. There is nothing pretentious about the city at all, it’s just a good place to go, have a plate of chicken wings and a beer, watch the Sabres and relax with a good crowd.

Amen.

The Buffalo News is also reporting that HNiC was allowed inside the Aud to film footage for their Ice Bowl pre-game show. Its going to be sad to see what remains of such a proud building with so many great hockey memories. Its a darn shame that over 10 years have passed since HSBC Arena was built and nothing has been done with the old Aud. I’ll believe that Bass Pro is going up when the shovel hits the dirt.

The Aud was a great venue to watch sports in. You were seated close to your neighbor, really building on the community experience. I remember as a kid climbing to the oranges (the Aud labeled their seating levels by color: golds (best) red, blue and orange) and thinking I was going to die, the seats were that steep. I remember the first time I sat in the lower golds and was amazed that I could see the players jerseys clearly; you were that close to the action.

WGRZ edited a great video compilation of all of the different sporting events that happened at the Aud. I was shocked to remember that Hasek played in the blue and gold, that he’s been in the NHL for so long.

This video is probably one of my all-time favorites. Seeing the Sabres greats each take their last lap with the puck around the Aud, with Sabre Dance in the background, its just mind blowing to see the talent this organization has had over the years. And the Let’s Go Buffalo chant in the darkened arena is giving me chills at the moment.

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