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  1st 2nd 3rd TOTAL
Dallas 0 1 1 2
Buffalo 3 2 0 5

Friday, June 18, 1999

The Sabres backs are up against the wall. It is do or die as the Sabres face elimination at the hands of the Dallas Stars in game 6. At the start of the game, Wayne Primeau flips the puck into the right corner and rams into Derian Hatcher as he tries to retrieve the puck in the corner. The two immediately drop their gloves and go at it as the over 18,500 leap to their feet and roar. Primeau lands a couple rights to the face of Hatcher, drawing blood under his right eye. But the two continue to spar until Primeau hits him with an undercut to Hatcher's chin, sending him to the ice. That was payback for Hatcher ending the season of Rhett Warrener when he jumped Warrener at the end of game 5 and Rhett broke his ankle as the two fell to the ice.

After Primeau had knocked Hatcher down and out, 4 Dallas Stars mob Primeau and the Sabres join into the melee and the two teams set the tone for the game.

Lindy Ruff decided that the only way to break up the feared Dallas trap they employ was to borrow something from the movie "Slap Shot" and rush everyone in a V formation, including the defense. The scheme was to have the center man lead the way past the red line and try to bull his way to the Dallas blue line. If he couldn't get past him, knock the opposing player with a huge open-ice check. Then maybe one of the Sabre wingers could pick up the loose puck. That worked the first time the Sabres employed the V 5 minutes into the first period. Mike Peca knocked off Mike Modano and Varada picked up the puck and then all 5 Sabres were attacking up the middle. Everyone drove to the net and were barreling down on Ed Belfour when Jay McKee shot the puck through the attacking V and Belfour didn't see a thing as Buffalo took the 1-0 lead.

In the next shift, Primeau bullied his way into the enemy zone and carried it in until he passed it back to Satan who then got behind his blockers and suddenly skated to the front and beat Belfour with a shot top shelf.

The Sabres took a 3-0 lead when Dixon Ward scored a screened shot while the Sabre V was gunning down on Belfour. The Sabres had a new weapon against the mighty trap. Now Dallas had to come up with a way to stop it. In the second period, Hitchcock put Hatcher at center and Hatcher tried taking out the three Sabres in the point of the V and was successful. Pat Verbeek grabbed the puck and was able to get a shot past Hasek to narrow the lead to 3-1. But then the Sabres employed their V for a different purpose. This time the V employed all it's impact right into Hatcher. Primeau, Varada and Zhitnik all plowed into Hatcher, breaking 6 of his ribs and out of the game. The crowd gave the huge hit a thundering ovation.

The Sabres scored 2 more goals in the second to take a 5-1 lead. Roman Turek replaced Belfour in the third period and was able to shut down the V force except on one occasion when everyone crashed into Turek and slammed the net crashing into the boards. The Sabres were given 2 penalties for crashing Turek and Dallas managed to score another goal on Hasek. The game ended 5-2 and as the teams were leaving the ice, Hitchcock caught up with Ruff and the two started battling it out. It was like WWF as the two went at it like a couple of barbarians. Finally the police had to break it up and handcuffed Hitchcock and took him to the Erie County Holding Center. He was charged with assault and was thrown into the slammer without bail. The judge set his court hearing for Wednesday, the day after game 7 of the Stanley Cup finals. That was a victory for the locals as the Stars would have to prepare for the final game without their coach.

"This is a complete outrage," screamed Hitchcock from his jail cell. "You cannot do this to me! I'm the coach of the Dallas Stars and they need me to help them win the Stanley Cup!" The inmates just laughed at him and his cellmate, an ex-defensive end for the Buffalo Bills, took him by his collar and flipped him up against the wall. It was going to be a long 3 days for Hitchcock before he got his freedom again.