The illustrious home and home series.  Captain Obvious dares to tell the novice hockey fan or the fan that has demolished far too many brain cells what this series actually is.  Home and Home is just that.  Two teams square off in back-to-back games. One being in each of the two team’s arenas.

Years ago when brawls and fights were a nightly part of the sport, these series proved to create, maintain or establish a rivalry. Two consecutive days get the dislike of the other team’s players at a high only achieved and bypassed in the NHL playoffs. Fighting has become a very rare or occasional part of the game at the NHL level, although it still exists. Home and home series may increase chances of a fight based on tempers flaring playing the same team two days in a row.

In addition to the tension peaking between the teams, if the cities are within driving range, both buildings will have many fans making the trip attending their team’s road game.  Then you have the die-hard fans who go to both games. The “Dead Heads” of the NHL.  I relish home and home series. Not in Sweden where neither team really is at home. I refer to the likes of the Buffalo/Toronto series this weekend with Buffalo being victorious in game one in the Queen City.

These two hockey Cities so close, yet so far as they sit in two different countries separated by a no-nation customs office. 90 minutes of travel will be approximately the actual driving time.  Don’t blame me if you do not meet that estimate as I can not control how many Time Hortons stops and Mr Sub visits you take part in. For that (hopefully) brief moment in time you spend in the Custom’s Office, you are not protected by either country and they can retain you or search you any way they desire.  Once you are safely in said other nation, throw your hands up in the air and shout “Wolverines!!”. This has been a shameless plug for the original 1980’s movie Red Dawn, not the reboot.

By the way, you can really live out your “Speed Racer” desires on the QEQ, especially once you pass by Hamilton. 

Back to the ice.

Friday the Sabres scored four unanswered goals in the second period on their way to a 6-4 victory at Key Bank Center. Linus Ullmark was extremely sharp in goal for the Sabres again, turning aside 25-of-29 shots faced for his sixth win of the year. Unfortunately, Saturday’s bout didn’t follow suit as John Tavares won it for the Leafs in overtime to drop the Sabres record to 12-10-5 with a date with the Devils on the horizon.

So in the future here are some tips for a successful trip. Grab your passport. Empty the vehicle of any sort of weapons or signs of illicit substances. If that’s your thing. Make sure your inspection and registration are up to date. Show respect to the customs officer by removing sunglasses or ball caps when its your turn to pull up to the booth. Be honest where you are going and obviously cooperate with whatever they need of you.

Head on up the QEW until you are in Toronto. Go grab dinner and adult beverages at Wayne Gretzky’s restaurant. Then head over to the arena decked out in your finest Sabres gear. Be ready for some fun insults from Leafs fans. A popcorn shower is always a possibility. As is becoming best friends with the Leafs fans around you.

I got it all planned out for you.  Just Sayin….

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