Late on Thursday night, the news that Buffalo Sabres fans never wanted to hear was sadly announced.

According to Mike Harrington of The Buffalo News, which was confirmed to him and The Buffalo News by the Sabres organization, beloved play-by-play man Rick Jeanneret has passed away at the age of 81.

Paul Hamilton of WGR radio in Buffalo is also now reporting the unfortunate news.

The team shortly after announced it on social media.

Jeanneret retired from broadcasting after the 2021-2022 regular season. He gradually worked less games over the last few years of his legendary and magnificent career.

Jeanneret first started calling games for the Sabres on the radio during the team's second ever season in 1971. He continued on the radio, then TV, as the Sabres play-by-play man for over 50 years.

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There is no single person that has meant more to Sabres fans of multiple generations than RJ. He gave the team a clear and distinct voice. His style of play-by-play was unique and it was incredibly heartwarming. Nobody called a hockey game like Jeanneret.

From May Day to the Jason Pominville "scary good call."

The Hasek saves to Chris Drury with 7.7 seconds left.

Jason Woolley's game 1 OT winner in the Stanley Cup Final "shot heard round the hockey world" to the Steve Shields and Garth Snow fight.

Alexander The Great (Mogilny) and La La La La Lafontaine.

Rick Jeanneret was the Buffalo Sabres. He's the reason so many fans here love the game of hockey. We wanted to be RJ and call the game like him. The number of memories we all have.

Rest in Peace to a legend.

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