Sean Malone was born and raised in West Seneca, NY. A lifelong Sabres fan, the 24-year old center fell in love with the game ten miles southeast of Hockey Heaven.
“Watching the Sabres growing up in the Stanley Cup playoffs was the coolest thing in the world,” said Malone.
All of his childhood dreams came true when he heard his name called by Buffalo in the 2013 NHL Entry Draft.
“To be drafted by your hometown team is something special and it’s been a long journey for sure,” said Malone.
It comes with a lot of perks, including having loved ones nearby for support on and off the ice. His parents come to see him play regularly and have also taken some important road trips, like Sean’s NHL debut game against the Florida Panthers. He got the call while playing for Harvard in the 2017 Frozen Four.
“My parents were able to come, one of my old coaches was in the area and able to come,” said Malone. “It was special seeing how happy their were when i got off the ice and how happy I was too.”
Malone was a stranger to Rochester, never having visited before he moved to the Flower City on assignment with the Amerks. So far he is enjoying the eastern side of Western New York, especially playing for one of the oldest franchises in the AHL.
“It’s a historical place, playing in front of those fans and that arena every day is really cool,” said Malone.
Of all of Malone’s fanboy moments in his seven years with the Sabres organization, he feels meeting Rene Robert, legendary right-wing and member of the French Connection. The two spoke at a golf tournament, when their carts were parked next to one another.
“Being able to be in the presence of those guys who have done so much for the organization and being such a huge fan growing up, it was pretty cool.”
Photos courtesy of the Rochester Americans