Kukla's Korner Hockey
by Paul on 05/16/06 at 09:54 AM ET
Three years ago the Buffalo Sabres were bankrupt, operating on NHL handouts and awash in speculation about their demise.... Today the Sabres are headed for the Eastern Conference finals for the first time since 1999, set to play Carolina in a best-of-seven series starting Saturday in Raleigh, N.C. ...With a $27 million payroll in a league with a $39 million salary cap, the Sabres are among the NHL's thriftiest clubs. Initially that didn't sit well with fans, who were disappointed at management's loss of free agent players and spare acquisitions. But attendance ended up more than 3,000 a game this season from 2003-04, and the season ticket base is up 2,000.read on
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