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Encounters with Sabres


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#1 PASabreFan

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Posted 22 February 2014 - 05:13 PM

I was going to put this in the Awesome thread, but it might work well by itself.

I had two guys come to the house today to look at some antiques/household items I'm trying to unload. The one guy, Bob, noticed some of my Sabres memorabilia in my office and was especially taken by a framed photo of the Aud and ticket stubs to the first game I went to. He told me he was a regular at the Aud starting in about 1973.

Anyway, he lived near some of the Sabres of that era and got to know them a bit. Bob's house wasn't far from the bachelor pad inhabited by Danny Gare, Derek Smith and Terry Martin. And he often saw Perreault buying smokes at a little store.

Bob had a funny, but terrifying, story of almost killing Craig Ramsay one time. Bob worked for the town (Amherst, I think he said) and drove a dump truck. Craig had a basketball hoop outside his house, and as Bob was approaching the Ramsay place one day, Craig was out shooting hoops. The ball rebounded away from him and down the driveway.

Bob said Craig followed the ball "like a little kid," not paying any attention to traffic. Bob "stood on the brakes" to try and stop, while Craig literally froze in the middle of the road. The truck stopped a few feet short of the Rammer, who apologized to Bob and shook his hand — and thanked him for saving his life.

If anybody can top that one, be my guest!

#2 Glass Case Of Emotion

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Posted 22 February 2014 - 05:26 PM

Awesome story. When I first read the title of the thread, I thought this was going to be like that part of Craigslist that they shut down...


#3 nfreeman

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Posted 22 February 2014 - 06:10 PM

Nothing remotely as cool as the Rammer story, but I did see Perreault picking up takeout food one time at the Four Seasons restaurant on Maple Road.  I'd heard he lived around there.

Also, Scotty Bowman lived a couple of streets over from me and I saw him a couple times in the neighborhood.  I couldn't do anything but frown though as I was PO'd about him trading Rico.

#4 SwampD

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Posted 22 February 2014 - 06:11 PM

View Postnfreeman, on 22 February 2014 - 06:10 PM, said:

Nothing remotely as cool as the Rammer story, but I did see Perreault picking up takeout food one time at the Four Seasons restaurant on Maple Road.  I'd heard he lived around there.

Also, Scotty Bowman lived a couple of streets over from me and I saw him a couple times in the neighborhood.  I couldn't do anything but frown though as I was PO'd about him trading Rico.
:lol:

#5 Bills12Sabres11

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Posted 22 February 2014 - 06:22 PM

I ran into Lindy Ruff and his family at Chicago O'hare several years back. I mentioned to him that I was reading all sorts of negative stories about him in the press and expressed my support and admiration. He looked me in the eye and said "don't believe anything you read and only half of what you see" Idk why but that always stuck with me!!

#6 IKnowPhysics

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Posted 22 February 2014 - 06:25 PM

Lindy Ruff liked to go bowling, saw him a couple times over at Sheridan Lanes on afternoons when they didn't have games.

#7 shrader

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Posted 22 February 2014 - 06:31 PM

It's not a sabre story but it's pretty good. I was in DC for the frozen four in 2009. I went to my hotel bar for a few drinks. I was standing at the bar waiting to order and I looked to my left. Standing right next to me were Jack O'Callahan, Dave Silk, Jim Craig, and Mike Eruzione. I had bumped into Rizzo several times working at BU, but to randomly bump into all four was kind of crazy. These guys are American sports legends (well, two of them anyway) and they can just gather at a bar and not be bothered because no one has a clue who they are.

#8 BRAWNDO

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Posted 22 February 2014 - 07:12 PM

We were celebrating my uncle's birthday at The Roadhouse Grille on Transit when Lindy Ruff and Mike Ramsey walked in with their families.  My Uncle is a huge Sabres Fan but did not want to bother them.  After we sang Happy Birthday to him, both Ruff and Ramsey walked over to our table, shook hands with him and wished him a Happy Birthday.  Lindy even stuck around and talked about how the team was playing that season for a few minutes.  Very memorable moment for my Uncle.

#9 Tankalicious

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Posted 22 February 2014 - 07:41 PM

Met Rob Ray walking out of the arena after they beat Carolina 7-1. He said he was exhausted and I, like an idiot, said "don't fall asleep behind the wheel" and he said "after that win I can die happy."

#10 Claude_Verret

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Posted 22 February 2014 - 08:15 PM

Sat at the bar alongside Rico many times at Finlocks in Clarence.

#11 weave

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Posted 22 February 2014 - 08:31 PM

Saw and chatted with Rob Ray many times at outdoor shows.  Jim Lorentz attended the same church we did.  Used to see Dave Andrechuck at Brennan's Bowery bar on non-game Friday nights.  When my wife was pregnant with our son we used to eat Sunday breakfast at the Country Kitchen on Niagara Falls Blvd.  Used to see Larry Playfair in their often enough.

My crowning achievement in close encounters with celebrities happening during a flight home from LA for a business trip. Thanks to a last minute flight request  I had first class tix and managed to sit across the aisle from Cindy Crawford for the flight from LAX to Detroit, and then when I switched planes for the trip to Buffalo I had Grant Fuhr in the seat in front of me.  He was returning from a Dr. visit for his most recent knee surgery.   Cindy Crawford is a tall glass of water and beautiful even without makeup.  And she had a posse of security with her.  Fuhr was trying his level best to not interact with anyone.

My wife's father used to be the service manager at one of the Cadillac dealerships in the area.  When my wife and I first started dating my future FIL tried to set her up with Tom Barrasso whenever he came to the dealership to get service done on his car. :cry:   I now give my FIL sh!t regularly for not pursing that more aggressively.


Almost forgot to add, ate lunch at the clubhouse for the Links at Ivy Ridge in Clarence sitting next to Rick Martin.  Had a great hockey conversation with him.  Very friendly guy.  Just weeks before he died.

Edited by weave, 22 February 2014 - 08:33 PM.


#12 Eleven

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Posted 22 February 2014 - 08:37 PM

Too many to mention.  It happens on a near-monthly basis.  Many of them are very nice people--and, believe it or not--I'll laud Stafford here.  In real life, he's about the best guy ever.  He really is.

#13 sabills

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Posted 22 February 2014 - 08:51 PM

I sold Ruff Microsoft Office for Mac  one time when I was working at Office Max. It was pretty cool.

#14 tom webster

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Posted 22 February 2014 - 09:09 PM

View PostEleven, on 22 February 2014 - 08:37 PM, said:

Too many to mention.  It happens on a near-monthly basis.  Many of them are very nice people--and, believe it or not--I'll laud Stafford here.  In real life, he's about the best guy ever.  He really is.

I would concur. From management to coaches to players, had only one bad experience dealing with anyone connected to the Sabres.

#15 716

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Posted 22 February 2014 - 09:21 PM

I was playing street hockey in my driveway with my brother and buds when a shirtless Gil Perreault, who lived in the neighborhood on Ranch Trail West in Williamsville, (we lived on Ranch Trail) drove right up in the driveway. The game stopped and I was the representative of my friends. In his familiar broken English, he asked me if I knew anyone who had a riding lawnmower, who could cut his lawn. Unfortunately, my family didn't have one and neither did any of my friends so I had to say no. Then without getting out of the car to play or talk to us kids, he backed out of the situation and out of our lives. It was a huge moment in my teenhood. Here he was, the Babe Ruth of Buffalo sports, right in my driveway!....Just wish he would've gotten out and played with us a while. (My brother was in goal)

Truth be told, I would've cut his lawn with a pair of scissors.

Also my dad used to get haircuts with Scotty Bowman at a barber shop in the Maple-North Forest Plaza.

Edited by 716, 22 February 2014 - 09:22 PM.


#16 johnnychemo

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Posted 22 February 2014 - 10:41 PM

When I was around 10-11 years old (~1976), I played in my school band. My band teacher was also a private pilot and would occaisionally take a student or two on an airplane ride out of Prior Aviation. One early Spring evening, I was the lucky kid who got to go with him. We got back after our flight, and I noticed some of the well dressed guys sitting around Prior looked kinda familiar. Turns out the Sabres were flying a charter out of Prior to Philadelphia that evening. In a little while, the whole terminal would be filled with players and personnel. I called my parents, and they gave me permission to stay a little later. So, I wound up getting all the players autographs, including the French Connection, as well as Marcel Pronovost, Ted Darling, and (I think) Jeanerette. I still have the autographs to this day. If I remember to dig them up, I'll snap a pic and post it.

What a cool evening!

#17 Ghost of Dwight Drane

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Posted 22 February 2014 - 11:22 PM

View Postsabills, on 22 February 2014 - 08:51 PM, said:

I sold Ruff Microsoft Office for Mac  one time when I was working at Office Max. It was pretty cool.

You'd think Darcy would have bootlegged him a copy to save a few bucks?

View PostEleven, on 22 February 2014 - 08:37 PM, said:

Too many to mention.  It happens on a near-monthly basis.  Many of them are very nice people--and, believe it or not--I'll laud Stafford here.  In real life, he's about the best guy ever.  He really is.

Absolutely. I've said it many times here...don't confuse skewing someone for how they perform their multi-million dollar job for skewing them as people 95% of the time.

Edited by Ghost of Dwight Drane, 22 February 2014 - 11:23 PM.


#18 thewookie1

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Posted 22 February 2014 - 11:46 PM

Hmmm lets see.....

Back when I was a toddler, I am told, I got high fives from many of the players in the mid 90's at the Aud as they'd head on/off the bench. My great-grandparents had season tickets next to the tunnel and had them from 1970 until my great-grandfather's death in '03, (He went to hockey games when he was 90!) At the Aud, their tunnel seats actually couldn't be accessed without crossing the home team's tunnel. They actually held up some Sabres for they'd actually stop to let my great-grandparents by. Later in the FNC, they had seats directly across from the 200 Level to Parking Ramp tunnel. They literally had 4 seats for just them +2.

As for more recently, I bumped into both Hodgson and Foligno at the Sabres store during that 50% off sale after the lockout. Hodgson, quite literally walked up next to me and I didn't even notice him until after he'd gone and signed a kid's jersey on his way out. Marcus Foligno was far more hilarious, he walked into the crowded store with either his wife or girlfriend and practically no one recognized him. After some time, I actually walked up to him and thanked him for the great season he'd had with Ennis and Stafford that last summer, along with shook his hand. He was happy to talk with me briefly probably because I was quiet and he & I parted ways after a few minutes and resumed our respective shopping.

He isn't a Sabre, but I live across the street from Fred Jackson, the Bills RB. He's a really nice guy, a family man at home too. A couple years ago my father and I helped him push his SUV into his driveway when he'd forgotten to hire a plow guy before his yearly post-season trip to Iowa and Texas to see family.

#19 nfreeman

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Posted 22 February 2014 - 11:50 PM

View Post716, on 22 February 2014 - 09:21 PM, said:


Also my dad used to get haircuts with Scotty Bowman at a barber shop in the Maple-North Forest Plaza.

Freddy the barber?  My dad got his hair cut there too!

#20 Tankalicious

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Posted 23 February 2014 - 12:22 AM

BREAKING: 716 and Freeman are long-lost brothers.

#21 Ghost of Dwight Drane

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Posted 23 February 2014 - 12:48 AM

View PostTankalicious, on 23 February 2014 - 12:22 AM, said:

BREAKING: 716 and Freeman are long-lost brothers.

Or...their dads have gambling issues......

#22 Tankalicious

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Posted 23 February 2014 - 12:53 AM

View PostGhost of Dwight Drane, on 23 February 2014 - 12:48 AM, said:



Or...their dads have gambling issues......

Or their dad has gambling issues... And gambled away one of his sons.

#23 wyldnwoody44

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Posted 23 February 2014 - 12:59 AM

I play against jay McKee every year in a tennis tournament, he wins more often than not.... Also ran into our beloved darcy regier at miller tennis center on a few occasions as his son practiced there.... Also delivered the baby of Tim macre's wife..... That's about it for me, no cool old time stories.

#24 plenzmd1

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Posted 23 February 2014 - 07:37 AM

One time, at band camp...

Maybe bout 5 years ago saw RJ and Rob Ray having coffee in the lobby of the Mayflower Hotel about 9 AM   Game against the Caps that night. They both looked like they had closed some late night joint and had just strolled in the door, especially Ray.

Went up said a quick hi, they have me a Death Stare like I have rarely seen. Got the hint and just walked away.

Another broadcaster story. In NYC having breakfast at some small place, and halfway through my breakfast big crew of folks sits at tae next me, maybe 5 guys. As soon as I hear the voice , I know it's Pete Weber. He was with the Nashville TV crew. Pete was thrilled someone recognized him / his voice in NYC, and invited  me to their table and we had breakfast together. Was kinda fun.
.

Edited by plenzmd1, 23 February 2014 - 07:39 AM.


#25 Icehole

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Posted 23 February 2014 - 08:19 AM

Had a puck signed by Jerry Korab and Gil Perrault when I was a kid... at a GM dealership in Tonowanda.  Use to chat with former D Mike Kotska, now with the Hawks, while the UMass guys were working out and when there was open skate at the Mullin Center.  Really nice guy.  Quick kinda hung out out back.

Took care of Scotty Bowman's two white Shepherds, when he brought them into the Blue Cross Animal clinic when I was in high school.  Worked cleaning up there.  That is about all my band camp stories.  Oh and I had a connected friend get me a hockey stick autographed by all the 75 Buffalo Sabres.  Still have it.  It is on an old Northland wooden stick.

Edited by North Buffalo, 23 February 2014 - 08:58 AM.


#26 716

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Posted 23 February 2014 - 08:48 AM

I played street hockey against Jay McKee when he was just a rookie at the Lathrop St. American Indoor Street Hockey Center. Don't remember much about him, just that everyone was buzzing about him.

#27 Kr632

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Posted 23 February 2014 - 09:39 AM

My uncle has downs syndrome and we were talking to rob ray after a game. Rob and my uncle were going to pose for a picture acting like they were fighting and my uncle punched rob in the face. The look on robs face was priceless. Always good times when rob is around

#28 PASabreFan

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Posted 23 February 2014 - 10:09 AM

View PostKr632, on 23 February 2014 - 09:39 AM, said:

My uncle has downs syndrome and we were talking to rob ray after a game. Rob and my uncle were going to pose for a picture acting like they were fighting and my uncle punched rob in the face. The look on robs face was priceless. Always good times when rob is around

OK, just wait a cotton-pickin'-minute (can I say that in 2014?)… was this the night… Rob… pretended to pull off his fake beard and hang it on that hook?! Now it makes sense! He was concussed!

View Postwyldnwoody44, on 23 February 2014 - 12:59 AM, said:

I play against jay McKee every year in a tennis tournament, he wins more often than not.... Also ran into our beloved darcy regier at miller tennis center on a few occasions as his son practiced there.... Also delivered the baby of Tim macre's wife..... That's about it for me, no cool old time stories.

Delivered Mrs. Macre's baby… that's a close second right now. Obscure, but oh so personal. I am holding the top spot for chz. But apparently loose lips sink ships.

#29 sicknfla

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Posted 23 February 2014 - 10:24 AM

Do in game encounters count? Back in the early 90's my buddy and i were sitting first row golds at the aud. Right down by the face-off dot. We were playing the Hartford Whalers. Brad May was leaning up against the boards waiting for a TV timeout to end. My buddy pounds the glass and gets his attention. He motions to May to fight one of the Whalers - sorry memory not that good. May looks at him and them turns and looks at Whaler. Then says "him" through the glass.

Puck drops and God as my witness before they cleared the zone the gloves were dropped and they were going at it. Next time May came in the zone he hit the glass with his stick where we were sitting. Everyone around us knew what he did and we were all screaming. Awesome moment and forever a Brad May fan.

Hell now that i think about it it could have been late 80's. Where does time go?

Edited by sicknfla, 23 February 2014 - 10:26 AM.


#30 Eleven

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Posted 23 February 2014 - 10:27 AM

View Postsicknfla, on 23 February 2014 - 10:24 AM, said:

Do in game encounters count? Back in the early 90's my buddy and i were sitting first row golds at the aud. Right down by the face-off dot. We were playing the Hartford Whalers. Brad May was leaning up against the boards waiting for a TV timeout to end. My buddy pounds the glass and gets his attention. He motions to May to fight one of the Whalers - sorry memory not that good. May looks at him and them turns and looks at Whaler. Then says "him" through the glass.

Puck drops and God as my witness before they cleared the zone the gloves were dropped and they were going at it. Next time May came in the zone he hit the glass with his stick where we were sitting. Everyone around us knew what he did and we were all screaming. Awesome moment and forever a Brad May fan.

Hell now that i think about it it could have been late 80's. Where does time go?

That is one cool story.

#31 wyldnwoody44

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Posted 23 February 2014 - 10:36 AM

View PostPASabreFan, on 23 February 2014 - 10:09 AM, said:



Delivered Mrs. Macre's baby… that's a close second right now. Obscure, but oh so personal. I am holding the top spot for chz. But apparently loose lips sink ships.

Lol where is chz anyways, and what do you know?!?! .. I think some other stories here def top just an encounter at work for me, amazingly I don't have more stories. Anyone here get to skate on the ice at the aud?

#32 Corp000085

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Posted 23 February 2014 - 10:46 AM

View Postwyldnwoody44, on 23 February 2014 - 10:36 AM, said:



Lol where is chz anyways, and what do you know?!?! .. I think some other stories here def top just an encounter at work for me, amazingly I don't have more stories. Anyone here get to skate on the ice at the aud?

I've skated at the aud. I consider Richard martin and family a friend first, sabre legend second. RIP.

on theta note, Rico took me to game 3 of the 99finals. We lost, but I won. He took me to the alumni suite and I shared quite a few drinks with [insert any retired sabre here]. I also shared a barber with lindy Ruff and marcel dion.

#33 wyldnwoody44

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Posted 23 February 2014 - 10:51 AM

View PostCorp000085, on 23 February 2014 - 10:46 AM, said:



I've skated at the aud. I consider Richard martin and family a friend first, sabre legend second. RIP.

on theta note, Rico took me to game 3 of the 99finals. We lost, but I won. He took me to the alumni suite and I shared quite a few drinks with [insert any retired sabre here]. I also shared a barber with lindy Ruff and marcel dion.
Very cool, the aud was gone by time I was old enough for playing there, I was able to hit the ice at marine Midland arena/crossroads areas (I forget what it was when I was there) and my cousin played for the buffalo wings when they had a team so I was able to roller blade there with some of those guys.... Very cool you have sabres history as a friend

#34 weave

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Posted 23 February 2014 - 11:40 AM

View Postsicknfla, on 23 February 2014 - 10:24 AM, said:

Do in game encounters count? Back in the early 90's my buddy and i were sitting first row golds at the aud. Right down by the face-off dot. We were playing the Hartford Whalers. Brad May was leaning up against the boards waiting for a TV timeout to end. My buddy pounds the glass and gets his attention. He motions to May to fight one of the Whalers - sorry memory not that good. May looks at him and them turns and looks at Whaler. Then says "him" through the glass.

Puck drops and God as my witness before they cleared the zone the gloves were dropped and they were going at it. Next time May came in the zone he hit the glass with his stick where we were sitting. Everyone around us knew what he did and we were all screaming. Awesome moment and forever a Brad May fan.

Hell now that i think about it it could have been late 80's. Where does time go?

That.  is.  Awesome.

Brad May was nucking futs.  Gawd I loved him.  Total man crush.

#35 cdexchange

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Posted 23 February 2014 - 02:02 PM

Best thread ever.

#36 qwksndmonster

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Posted 23 February 2014 - 03:44 PM

My brother and I went to the third(?) game of the lockout shortened season against the Hurricants.  We were sitting in the front row on the corner of the rink, so we got to watch half the game through warped glass.  During warm ups Ehrhoff was hanging out right next to us on the other side of the glass.  People were yelling to the players but they just went about their business most of the time.  I was too drunk to make any decent Deustch sentences so I just yelled that I loved him and his fatherland.  He turned and gave me a fist bump through the glass.

#37 bobis

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Posted 23 February 2014 - 03:45 PM

On a flight from Detroit to Orlando in 1998 or 1999 my seat was among the Orlando Solar Bears hockey team of the IHL. I made small hockey talk with some of them but most of them were napping or had head phones on. When I found out who they were, i couldn't believe it, as they were just young looking teenage kids. They were all cool and that was a good flight.

#38 Corp000085

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Posted 23 February 2014 - 04:52 PM

Milt Ellis announced my wedding party.

#39 Eleven

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Posted 23 February 2014 - 05:01 PM

View PostCorp000085, on 23 February 2014 - 04:52 PM, said:

Milt Ellis announced my wedding party.

If this is true, it takes the lead for coolest story.

#40 drnkirishone

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Posted 23 February 2014 - 05:42 PM

I challenged Rob Ray to a good ole hockey fight after ice hockey practice..... he laughingly decided to not test my 13 year old fighting skills. After we shared some shooting/passing and laughed at Dom's standoffish nature as he had the angry Dom face on and wouldn't come down the stairs until my team left the ice.

Edited by drnkirishone, 23 February 2014 - 05:43 PM.