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Rick Jeanneret's induction into the Sabres' Hall of Fame kicked off a string of honors, including today's, the Hockey Hall of Fame's Foster Hewitt Memorial Award. ©2012, Olean Times Herald
Bill Hoppe     Olean Times Herald
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BUFFALO – The scene plays out just about each time Rick Jeanneret walks around in public. Inevitably, fans stop the Sabres’ legendary announcer and tell him how much they enjoy the team’s broadcast.

Then they make a short plea to the play-by-play veteran, whose enthusiasm and passionate calls have made him a local icon.

“The other thing they say is, ‘Please don’t retire,’” Jeanneret, who will be honored by the Hockey Hall of Fame on Monday in Toronto, said Friday inside the …

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Mark Pysyk blocks a shot in his professional debut Friday. ©2012, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald
Bill Hoppe     Olean Times Herald
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ROCHESTER – The 42nd opening night in Buffalo Sabres history would’ve been “huge,” winger Drew Stafford said, even “amazing.” New seasons breed hope and optimism, and if the NHL lockout wasn’t in its 28th day, both would be sweeping through Buffalo right now.

The club was scheduled to host Sidney Crosby and the Pittsburgh Penguins tonight inside a capacity First Niagara Center.

The Sabres, healthy and stocked with offseason reinforcements, might’ve been considered a chic Eastern Conference contender again. Their dizzying late-season …

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©2012
Bill Hoppe     Olean Times Herald
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BUFFALO – Since their sizzling run in the 1970s, the members of the Sabres’ famed French Connection line – Rick Martin, Gilbert Perreault and Rene Robert – have been legendary, almost mythical figures around town

Now, literally, the famed trio will become larger-than-life.

The Sabres announced plans Thursday to immortalize the three by erecting a 10-foot bronze statue of the three together. The statue will be the centerpiece of a larger “Alumni Plaza,” which will be directly outside the First Niagara Center.

The …

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