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BOWMAN CUP NOT JUST FUN AND GAMES

Thursday, 04.10.2008 / 12:33 PM / News
By Brian Wheeler  - Sabres.com
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BOWMAN CUP NOT JUST FUN AND GAMES
The Bowman Cup is all fun and games until the puck is dropped. 

The Buffalo Sabres annual Scotty Bowman Showcase has become much more than an all-star game between players who hail from nearby communities.  It has evolved.

The players are no longer just competing for the opportunity to impress college scouts and possibly earn a scholarship. And they aren't just fighting for the right to have their name engraved on the ceremonial silver chalice. 

Winning the Bowman Cup has turned into a matter of pride between two rival cities and that battle continues tonight when the 2008 Bowman Cup takes place in HSBC Arena (Junior game - 6 p.m.; Seniors - 8 p.m.).

Admission for the games and parking is free.

"It starts out that way [just trying to have fun]," said Buffalo juniors head coach Larry Playfair, who have been intimately involved in the event since its inception in 2005.  "The thought is, it's a highlight for the kids at the end of the year, let's just get them out on the ice and we'll play them all equal.  Then the game gets going and you get into it.

"Watch what happens in the games.  Guys start banging into each other a little more.  It gets a little more confrontational and a little more physical.  Guys drive to the puck a little harder.  All the stuff that happens in a game, when guys want to win it, happen in the Bowman Cup."

With a smile, Playfair recalls a heated pep talk during the inaugural showcase when he was serving as an assistant coach on the Buffalo Senior squad.

The story illustrates how meaningful the game has become to everyone who is involved, and not just the players.

Even the longest tenured coach in the National Hockey League has not been immune to the rivalry.

"Lindy [Ruff] was coaching the very first cup," said Playfair.  "We were really beating Rochester at the end of the second period.  It was some crazy score like 9-2.   I thought Lindy was going to come in and give the guys a 'back off and just have some fun out there' speech.'

"And he absolutely fried them.  He said, 'look you've got nine but that's not good enough.  Go out there and fill the net.' 

"So I think it all comes back to competition.  It is a competition."

The Rochester Senior hockey team defeated the Buffalo Seniors by a score of 4-3 to win the 2007 Bowman Cup.

SCHEDULE

HOME
AWAY
PROMOTIONAL

STANDINGS

EASTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 p - BOS 82 54 19 9 261 177 117
2 y - PIT 82 51 24 7 249 207 109
3 x - TBL 82 46 27 9 240 215 101
4 x - MTL 82 46 28 8 215 204 100
5 x - NYR 82 45 31 6 218 193 96
6 x - PHI 82 42 30 10 236 235 94
7 x - CBJ 82 43 32 7 231 216 93
8 x - DET 82 39 28 15 222 230 93
9 WSH 82 38 30 14 235 240 90
10 NJD 82 35 29 18 197 208 88
11 OTT 82 37 31 14 236 265 88
12 TOR 82 38 36 8 231 256 84
13 CAR 82 36 35 11 207 230 83
14 NYI 82 34 37 11 225 267 79
15 FLA 82 29 45 8 196 268 66
16 BUF 82 21 51 10 157 248 52

STATS

2013-2014 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
C. Hodgson 72 20 24 -26 44
T. Ennis 80 21 22 -25 43
D. Stafford 70 16 18 -19 34
C. Ehrhoff 79 6 27 -27 33
C. Stewart 63 15 11 0 26
C. Conacher 79 7 19 1 26
T. Myers 62 9 13 -26 22
Z. Girgensons 70 8 14 -6 22
M. Foligno 74 7 12 -17 19
J. McBain 69 6 11 -13 17
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
M. Neuvirth 4 8 2 .921 2.78
J. Enroth 4 17 5 .911 2.82