Well it happened again.
This time, it was a miracle, last-minute “Hail Mary” pass into the endzone. Kyler Murray, the Arizona quarterback, broke the Buffalo Bills’ fans hearts last weekend…just a few seconds after the Bills quarterback, Josh Allen, had led the Bills to a last-minute victory…or so we thought.
In 1999, the Tennessee “Music City Miracle” play was also a last-minute dagger for Bills’ fans…leaving us shaking our heads in disbelief.
That same year, Brett Hull’s controversial triple-overtime hockey goal for the Dallas Stars (vs. the Buffalo Sabres) left us wanting for a championship, yet again…as we had during four straight Super Bowls in the early 1990’s with the Bills.
Being a Buffalo fan has long brought a sense that even in the best of times we could find a way to lose…and last weekend, it indeed happened again.
The next day, something funny happened though…instead of me getting upset and thinking -” OH NO, it happened again,” I found myself thinking…
A few weeks ago, the Bills’ quarterback, Josh Allen, lost his grandmother, Patricia. How did the Bills’ fan react? They have raised over $670,000 for Oishei Children’s Hospital in her name…that is what they did! Buffalo fans stick together and support their community…especially when times are the most difficult.
Josh Allen and his current teammates are well aware of Buffalo’s past, but they represent the present and the future for Buffalo. Even though they fell victim to Kyler’s last second heroics, this time just felt different. The resiliency of Buffalo to continue to get up off the mat when they have been knocked down, reminds me of other sports franchises that searched for their elusive championship.
And now is our time. Those of us who grew up in western, NY (I am from Jamestown, NY) are loyal and proud Buffalo fans. Even during the most miserable of seasons, we will stand behind our teams. My son Matt was born in North Carolina, almost three decades ago and has lived there his entire life…but he is one of the most loyal and proud Buffalo fans I have ever seen…and he grew up loving them when they were playing their worst. Buffalo fans simply never give up, regardless of how challenging times get. We are certainly not “fair weather” fans who start rooting for teams when they are winners.
From this day forward, it’s time for me to stop thinking we are going to lose and start believing we are going to win. As an entrepreneur, having an overflowing “glass is half-filled” mentality is critical to success. The glass is half-empty correlates to hoping for the Bills not to lose…no more!
Buffalo deserves better. They deserve to have us optimistically behind them every step of the way. When the Red Sox and Cubs finally won, it took a giant weight off their backs, but it didn’t change who they were as people and competitors, and it won’t change the Bills’ players either. They are competitors giving their best each week, and sometimes that does not lead to a win. In life, we don’t always win either – that’s for sure. A championship won’t change who we are as Buffalo fans, but it most certainly will put a gigantic smile on our faces!
Finishing second in sports can be brutal, especially when you play at the highest level. But losing builds character and failing and learning from your mistakes brings future success.
I am thankful to be Buffalo proud, whether we finish first, second or fifth…. but this time is different. I vow to believe we will win and look forward to when we finally get that elusive championship. Until that happens, my son Matt and I, along with tons of Buffalo fans will be optimistically behind you every step of the way!