Basketball fans bring energy to Queen City

BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) – The Queen City is bursting with basketball fandemonium as March Madness makes a rebound in Buffalo.

Frenzied fans poured out of the flood gates at First Niagara Center, each buzzing with excitement. Many were Syracuse fans and were still riding high after their win.

Luke Seward said, “They dominated; it was wonderful. They’re back.”

Greg McBride added, “They’re my favorite team. We played really good, we blew them out. Just looking forward to seeing them on Saturday.”

Kathy Wyatt drove to Buffalo with her husband from Cleveland and are driving right back after the game.

“I’m the basketball fan. He just gets dragged along,” she said. “This is what we do. Next year we’re going to drive to Syracuse for the regional, the East regional, and drive back to Cleveland for the West regional, and we’ll just drive back and forth…four days.”

Many restaurants and bars around Buffalo were really busy, especially the Pan Am Grill, which was home base for Syracuse alum. Some restaurants, we’re told, had two-hour wait times for tables.

Food truck fan Mark Sapka says the six food trucks stationed outside the arena were a welcome sight. His basketball beard was a sight of its own.

Ayoub Abboud runs the Knight Slider Food Truck. He says he’s had a good turnout. In the spirit of the City of Good Neighbors, Abboud gave a man some food who had been asking for spare change.

“It’s a great feeling down here, kind of livens up the area, especially with all the construction. Brings and attracts more people, I’m hoping, to the city,” he said.

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