BUFFALO – It wasn’t hard for Sabres winger Drew Stafford to see the excitement Terry and Kim Pegula’s purchase of the Buffalo Bills has generated around town.
“Everyone’s kind of got a little bit of a jump in their step,” Stafford said this morning, a day after Sabres owner Terry Pegula added the NFL franchise to his family’s growing sports empire.
The acquisition, Stafford said, is “bringing everyone together” around Buffalo.
“There’s a lot of positivity around,” the longest-tenured Sabre said. “It seems like a lot of fans are getting behind it. … People take their sports seriously. To have at least that stability knowing that the Bills aren’t going anywhere, I think that maybe makes a lot of people excited and looking forward to the future.”
Sabres center Zemgus Girgensons, who was sporting a Bills hat, said Terry Pegula’s “like the mayor of this city.”
“It’s like everyone knows Terry and his family in Buffalo,” he said.
Stafford wasn’t surprised the Pegulas got the Bills.
“From an outsider’s perspective, I figured when Terry wants something, Kim as well, they’re going to do their best to try to succeed,” he said.
Sabres winger Marcus Foligno, who was born in Buffalo, added: “We weren’t surprised. We know Terry’s a great owner. So he’s going to have that success with that team.”
Stafford said some Sabres want to attend Sunday’s Bills home opener against Miami.
“People are real excited for Sunday, especially coming off a big win in Chicago there,” he said. “So I know quite a few of us are going to try to make it to the game. I’m sure that they’re going to have some kind of big announcement. It’s only going to make it louder.”