Photo courtesy of Bill Wippert
Let’s go BUF – FA – LO!
Yes, that’s right, I said it– on RMNB!
As many of you know, I’m a Sabres/Caps fan that got into hockey watching Ryan Miller in the 2010 Olympics. I followed him back to the Sabres and from that moment on, they were my team (forgive me). I fell in love with the city, its team, and its people when I first visited in 2012.
Three years later I returned to my beloved city to catch a few games. Little did I know what was in store. After finding my photography on Twitter, Bill Wippert, the official photographer for the Sabres, organized a credential for me to use at the Sabres/Rangers game. I arrived at the beautiful First Niagara Center and Bill and his team made me feel welcome from the get-go. They showed me around what I call the “basement” of the arena, where I knew few fans had been. I watched them set up remotes and test transmitters to signal the strobe lights to help light up the rink on queue. They assigned me to my first “hole” and offered excellent tips for shooting. At game time, I truly saw the difference between shooting through a hole vs the glass. As many fellow photographers warned me, once you experience no glass, you’ll never want to go back. It’s the truth!
Monday morning, I was offered a credential to cover that night’s Sabres/Caps game. A hole at ice level, being able to shoot photos of my two favorite teams, how could anyone pass that up? I walked in knowing how things went and where things were. It felt as if I had been there for weeks, not merely my second game. I smiled at seeing the familiar faces in red down the hall, kicking a soccer ball in their pregame circle. As I set up at my newly assigned hole, I looked on either side of me and saw red. Lots of red. I love how dedicated both Sabres and Caps fans are. There is a large amount of the other in each city, and there’s always a battle for spirit at each game. Normally, Buffalo chants can overpower the “Let’s-Go-Caps!” at Verizon Center, and last night I could hear the Caps cheers far over the Sabres at First Niagara (but let’s be honest, they had some help from the fans of the Sabres tanking).
There’s a strong hockey connection between these cities, and I highly recommend their fans take the opportunity to see the teams match up in both cities.
Thank you to Bill and his team for their hospitality in Buffalo, and to those of RMNB who tolerate my love for the Sabres!
Hey, there I am!
Here are my photos from the night:
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