An update from downtown especially for you out-of-towners: Things are really progressing at the site of old Memorial Auditorium and the word is we could be less than a month away from the end of demolition of the Sabres' former home.
The East wall (the even-numbered sections) came down last week as you can watch in this must-see Buffalo News video. I wandered over to the site Wednesday morning and was struck by the section numbers clearly visible at the top of what was once the upper blues on the West side, where the press box once hung from the ceiling. (Click the picture at right for a clearer view). Through the whole process, seeing the orange railings in the balcony is also a bit bizarre.
What has struck me most as we head through the Stanley Cup playoffs is which end remains standing (left). It's the locker room end, and that's where a huge percentage of the building's great overtime moments took place. Virtually every big OT goal by the Sabres -- think Gare and Robert in '75, Tucker in '88, MayDay in '93 -- was scored at that end. (Hannan in '94 in the fourth OT was at the long gone Terrace Street end).
Think of what else took place near those locker rooms. The Schoenfeld-Cashman brouhaha in '72, Jo Jo White's free throws to beat the Braves in the '74 playoffs, Bob Nystrom's double-OT goal for the Islanders in '80, Wayne Gretzky's 77th in '82, Clint Malarchuk's gruesome injury in '89.
Look closely enough in the picture (click to blow it up) and you can still see the blue and gold stripes on the wall, the doorways leading to the locker room and the large opening for the zamboni. Crazy stuff. Great memories.
taggedAud demolition | Sabres | Stanley Cup