By Budd Bailey, Buffalo Sports Page Columnist

I saw a note on Twitter this morning from John Boutet that this is the 25th anniversary of the Sabres’ last game at the Aud.

Twenty-five years? Really? I still miss the place. I once said in an interview that everyone came to Memorial Auditorium in anticipation of having a good time – what with hockey, basketball, concerts, graduations, etc. That has held up pretty well, as the memories are mostly good.

I covered the last game against the Hartford Whalers, brought my camera, and got there early. Here are a few photos of that evening that you might like:

Press box guard Shawn Ryan enjoys the view from the penalty box before the game. I think Rob Ray still has the door.

Who could resist the chance to pose at center ice on this particular occasion?

Radio announcer Dave Miller should have tried calling the game from this perspective.

If there was a nicer guy in hockey than Craig Ramsay, I’m not sure I’ve met him.

Dave Kerner, Paul Hamilton and I first worked together at WEBR Radio. They always were good company at Aud events.

That’s a rather impressive crowd in the radio booth – Rick Martin, Dave Miller, Pete Weber, Rene Robert, and Danny Gare.

Terry Martin and Mitch Korn celebrate the last game at “The Poor Man’s Aud Club” near the front entrance.

My favorite photo from the night – it’s of the reporters that “turned off the lights at the Aud.” I’m joined by Jim Kelley, Mike Haim and Bucky Gleason.

(Follow Budd on Twitter @WDX2BB)

Budd Bailey

Budd Bailey has been involved in almost every aspect of the local sports scene for the last 40 years. He worked for WEBR Radio, the Buffalo Sabres' public relations department and The Buffalo News during that time. In that time he covered virtually every aspect of the area's sports world, from high schools to the Bills and Sabres and everything in between. Along the way, Budd served as a play-by-play announcer for the Bisons, an analyst for the Stallions, and a talk-show host. He won the National Lacrosse League's Tom Borrelli Award as the media personality of the year in 2011, and was a finalist for that same award in 2017. Budd's seventh and eighth books, one on the Transcontinental Railroad and the other about Ichiro Suzuki, are scheduled to be released in the fall.

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