On today’s episode of the Moran-Alytics Podcast, Patrick Moran is joined by recurring guest Joe Yerdon, Buffalo Sabres beat writer for The Athletic in a fun conversation taped live at the Essex Street Pub on the west side of Buffalo.

This is Yerdon’s third time on the podcast but first in person. In fact, just minutes before this taping is the first time the two ever met.  Once the tape started rolling Pat and Joe spent time talking Buffalo and more specifically the west side, a neighborhood Moran grew up in and Yerdon currently lives in now.

They run down some of Joe’s favorite sports for chicken wings before turning their attention to The Athletic, which now has more than a half-million subscribers. The Buffalo division received a huge boost on the football side recently when Joe Buscaglia joined the staff and Yerdon offers his thoughts on Joe B’s addition.  They also discuss Joe’s mindset during hockey offseason summer months before taking a break to mow down some BBQ, Jerk and Maple wings.

The second half of the conversation revolves around the Sabres and Joe takes on topics such as predicting if Rasmus Ristolainen will be traded before opening night, what blue liner is best equipped to be paired with Rasmus Dahlin, who should skate on the top line with Jack Eichel and Jeff Skinner, if Tage Thompson should spend the upcoming season in Buffalo, what is going on with the goaltending situation and wrapping up the chat providing a present day forecast for the upcoming season.

You can follow Joe on Twitter @JoeYerdon and of course check out his work at The Athletic, where they always have discount specials going on for annual subscriptions.

Special thanks to the Essex Street Pub for being a gracious host. It’s located at 530 Rhode Island Street in Buffalo and both Pat and Joe, already a Pub regular highly recommend checking it out.

Follow Patrick Moran on Twitter @patmorantweets