By Rick Homuth
BUFFALO, NY – After their big win over the Senators on Tuesday night, Sabres fans took to the streets celebrating what they believe to be the team's first game of the season.
"Boy, was that something else!" remarked Jeremy Gonzalez, a Buffalo native who attended the game. "I always try to make it out to the first game of the season, even if it means traveling."
"Plus, the offseason felt even longer than usual this year."
Fans both home and away commented primarily on the successful performance of Jack Eichel, who tallied up a goal and an assist in the win. Sources close to the Sabres' management are hoping that Eichel is able to play the entire season, injury-free.
"The energy out on the ice was just spectacular," reflected Robert Anderson, who watched Tuesday night's win from his home outside Buffalo. "That Eichel kid never takes a day off, and it really shows in his performance."
"I think the other guys also played well. One of my friends said something about one of them doing something."
Many members of the local media are glad to see the NHL season finally commence, as the offseason often leaves reporters with no choice other than to write about subjects other than Eichel, drafted second overall last year.
"It's been pretty quiet around here," said Donna Miret, beat reporter for a local news outlet. "People around here are far more content to talk about Evander Kane's quiet nights serving meals at the local soup kitchen, or how Ryan O'Reilly isn't being paid nearly enough."
"I think there was some other guy named Kane who ran into some trouble around here last year, but that wasn't really reported. Not sure what ever came of it," she continued.
"Either way, it's all old news now that Eichel and the boys are back."
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