Sabres Twitter Drinking Game

I like to have fun with the Sabres Twitter account as you usually don’t need to look too far for a poorly timed Tweet or a general lack of communicating key hockey facts. With that in mind, I thought it would be #fun to create a drinking game to accompany Sabres Twitter on game nights this year.

Have some fun with this and feel free to add your own recommendations in the comments section, we’ll make sure to update this as the season progresses. Continue reading

The Instigator Podcast 5.11 – Sabres Wish List

This week we reached out to our fan(s) to hear what you would put on a Sabres Wish List. Among the suggestions were redesigned jerseys, a return of the goathead, in-arena upgrades and much more. Chris and Tyler tackle the various items that were submitted while adding a few of our own. We also touch on the latest developments surrounding Evander Kane and the news of the Sabres Prospect Challenge and the coming US Junior Select Camp. You can listen and subscribe to The Instigator Podcast on iTunes or listen in on Stitcher by following the links.

The Instigator Podcast 4.15 – Use Your Head

Chris and Tyler get together to offer thoughts on the Evander Kane news, the report that Jamie McGinn’s price tag is now a 2nd round pick and we close things out with some thoughts on areas the Sabres could improve when it comes to promotions and the like.

Sharing Some Thoughts on Last Night’s Sabres-Related Outrage

The Sabres opened their preseason schedule last night in Minnesota with Jack Eichel dazzling in his first game action against NHL veterans, perhaps you heard. You may have also heard that the game wasn’t on television.

There has been a fair bit of outrage on the Twitterverse due to this development. The lack of streaming content for last weekend’s Prospects Challenge has left a hockey starved fan base without much to hang on as the regular season approaches. Last night’s game wound up bringing various fan complaints to a head. It was underscored by the adorable Tweet pictured here.sabres

Now, the Sabres have traditionally kept preseason games off television. My understanding from when I was with the Sabres is that it’s a relatively fruitless venture which puts an undue expense on the broadcast arm of the team. This makes a lot of sense when you consider your typical preseason game roster is filled at least halfway with players who won’t be with the club during the regular season and the viewer base isn’t nearly as invested as they would be for a regular season game.

I pointed this out on Twitter earlier in the day as the fervor over the lack of TV or a stream began to ramp up. At the very least, the precedent has been a relative lack of TV games in the preseason. So it’s not as if this was a massive change from the past. Also, from my perspective, I wasn’t overly concerned that the game wasn’t on TV.

What seems to have led to the collective outrage over last night’s game is a combination of poor outreach via social media and the swell of frustration surrounding streaming (and not streaming) the prospects games this summer. Continue reading

Off the Record: Disappointing change to blog summit hurts the event

It’s been nearly five years since I decided to start this little boondoggle called Two in the Box. I had spent a month blogging about my time at the Vancouver Olympics and I decided it was a good time and that I’d continue the fun when I got home.

My time as a venomous, small time, basement brigadier has given me the chance to keep writing on a semi-regular basis about a topic that is near and dear to my heart. It’s been fun and it’s even given me the chance to take on some cool opportunities. One of those opportunities is the ability to receive a press pass at Sabres home games. Another is access into the back room of Willy Wonka’s Factory – aka, the Sabres front office.

The Sabres have been running blog summits with slightly more regularity than my writing schedule over the past few years. I’ve personally made it to four or five of the meet ups and they’ve all featured their own level of intrigue for me.

My first Sabres Blog Summit occurred in the media room in press conference fashion with the Sabres PR and marketing teams on hand. Ted Black was the guest of honor and he sat at the front of the room, took our questions and answered them earnestly. Whether it was a question about the chances of starting a regional sports network, the return of the Frozen Four or the makeup of the roster, he addressed everything we asked with quality information. We all reported on the process and it was massively successful.

What I took away from the summits featuring Black was the positive discourse and his willingness to answer each question to the best of his ability. Hell, he all but confirmed that the Sabres were going to retire Dominik Hasek’s number once he was retired at a previous summit. Those encounters with Black as the MC not only gave us a chance to voice our opinions but to get answers and report back on them. It was a terrific practice that was unique in many ways.

Somewhere along the lines all of that changed. Continue reading

The Instigator Podcast 2.9 – Summer Developments

Once again, Eric and I got together to chat about the state of the Sabres. This time around we cover development camp, which players at camp stood out the most while also discussing the new third jersey and wrapping things up with plus/minus.

Comments are always welcome here or on Twitter. @2ITB_Buffalo and @3rdmanin

Reflections from the Basement Party: Sabres are a major player in social media

There is no point in offering a full recap of last night’s blog summit. There were 16 participants there and I’m certain that the other 15 in attendance are fully capable of offering a full and unique recap of the proceedings.

I want to take a moment to go over something that struck me as truly unique. Not only did the Sabres again open their arms to a community of people who are generally looked at as nerds who reside in their mother’s basement, but they added in yet another wrinkle than they had previously.

Last night’s summit was not only another opportunity for those outside of the traditional media to receive an audience with the team president, it was another step forward for those in the community. Five blogs will be given locker room access for the 2012-13 NHL season due to their continued presence in the press box last season and what would appear to be an appreciation, from the Sabres, as to the quality of the work they did. For the record, those blogs will be 3rd Man In, Buffalo Wins, Die By The Blade, Queen City Sports and Sabres Hockey Central.

What really struck me as special was the fact that the Sabres used a brand-new forum to make a major announcement regarding the team for the upcoming year. The summit was an event designed to bring a number of Sabres blogs together in a forum for discussion on the team. While it was certainly formatted just like a press conference, it was also a forum which has its root firmly planted in social media. What the Sabres did, was use a social media based group of people to launch an announcement for the upcoming season.

I cannot think of a time that a team in the NHL, or any major sport, has taken a new release to social media before providing the information to any other news outlet. This certainly wasn’t an exclusive for the blogging community, so don’t mistake that part, but this was certainly a step towards a new frontier for the Sabres.

Obviously this was a great way to tie in their new social media site, the ICE Network, and that may have been additional motivation for the way in which this news was announced. Regardless, the Sabres are definitely taking a step towards a new way of doing business. Continue reading