Sabres welcome frontline workers as first fans back at KeyBank Center

Local News

BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) — For the first time this season, the Buffalo Sabres had fans in attendance during Thursday’s game against the Boston Bruins.

As a thank you for their work throughout the pandemic, the organization invited 700 frontline workers from Roswell Park as part of “Hockey Fights Cancer” night. In a statement, Pegula Sports and Entertainment President Kim Pegula called the night an important one for the entire franchise and community.

Those in attendance say it was great to be able to get back out and enjoy a hockey game in person.

“It’s nice to be able to spend time with friends and family and enjoy the Sabres,” said Roswell Park nurse, Michael Dellaneve. “I grew up playing hockey, my father played hockey, both my sisters played hockey. Coming from a hockey household and growing up in Buffalo it’s a huge honor to be one of the first and see a team that’s a big part of the community.”

“We really have to thank the Sabres for giving us this opportunity, especially on the Roswell Park ‘Hockey Fights Cancer’ night” said Roswell Park researcher Dr. Michael Ciesielski. “To be some of the first people back in the swing of things to see the game, support the Sabres as they’ve supported us throughout the year, it’s a really great opportunity and a really great feeling.”

Those in attendance had to show proof of a negative COVID-19 test. Although this is the first game fans were able to attend this season, Saturday’s game against the Bruins will be the first that’s open to the general puplic.

Due to capacity limitations under New York State guidelines, only 10 percent will be allowed inside, which means just under 2,000 fans can go to Saturday’s game.

Marlee Tuskes is a reporter who has been part of the News 4 team since 2019. See more of her work here.

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