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Category: Buffalo-Sabres

The Buffalo Sabres Are Looking For A “Perfect Fit” In Their Coaching Search

from John Vogl of the Buffalo News,

In Tim Murray’s perfect world, the Sabres’ general manager would be good buddies with his coach. They would respect each other, chat often and agree on how personnel decisions should be made. Murray didn’t have that with Ted Nolan, so the GM is looking for a new coach.

Buffalo fired Nolan on Sunday, one day after the Sabres finished their second straight last-place season. There is no timetable for hiring a replacement.

“We both said it’s too bad it didn’t work out,” Murray said in First Niagara Center. “Is it chemistry? Maybe it’s just chemistry. Maybe it’s just two different personalities. You need chemistry on the ice, and you need chemistry off the ice....

The Sabres’ search could be intriguing. While Murray has long been fond of Luke Richardson, a minor-league coach hired by Murray when he was assistant GM in Ottawa, several big names could be available. Detroit’s Mike Babcock, a Stanley Cup winner, is in the final year of his contract but is unavailable until after the Red Wings are eliminated from the playoffs. Boston could fire Claude Julien, another Cup-winning coach.

read on

Filed in: NHL Teams, Buffalo Sabres, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Ted Nolan Done In Buffalo

BUFFALO, N.Y (April 12, 2015) -- Buffalo Sabres General Manger Tim Murray today announced Ted Nolan has been relieved of his duties as head coach of the Buffalo Sabres.  In addition, Murray also announced Danny Flynn has been relieved of his duties as an assistant coach and the contracts of Bryan Trottier and Tom Coolen will not be renewed.

added 8:50pm, GM Tim Murray met with the media, watch velow...

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Filed in: NHL Teams, Buffalo Sabres, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: ted+nolan

The Buffalo Sabres Are At The Top Of The NHL Draft Lottery List

from John Vogl of the Buffalo News,

For more than a year, Buffalo fans have been dreaming of Connor McDavid and Jack Eichel. The thought of watching one of them become a superstar in a Sabres jersey made folks shake with excitement. It made the on-ice suffering bearable because of the chance for a limitless future.

It’s no longer just a dream. Either McDavid or Eichel will be a member of the Sabres next season. One will skate out to center ice on opening night as the new face of the franchise.

The team’s last-gasp effort to avoid 30th place came to an end Friday night with a 4-2 loss to the Columbus Blue Jackets. Buffalo will head into Saturday’s season finale against Pittsburgh assured of drafting first or second in June, a position that will be finalized with next Saturday’s draft lottery.

Though the players were disappointed to finish last for the second straight season, the organization achieved the goal it set back in April 2013. It will build through the draft by landing a generational prospect. McDavid set an Erie Otters record by scoring five goals Friday night, while Eichel became just the second freshman to win the Hobey Baker Award as college hockey’s top player.

continued

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Tanking Talk Could End Tonight

from Mike Harrington of the Buffalo News,

This is the night it can mercifully be over. All of it.

The Tank talk. The fan-on-fan and media-on-media barking. The social media sniping. The late nights at the television or computer screens watching horrific performances from the Arizona Coyotes and Edmonton Oilers.

Same for the crowds at First Niagara Center openly chanting and cheering for the visiting team, leaving the Buffalo Sabres sullenly shaking their heads in the dressing room about a phenomenon almost never seen in professional sports.

The masses will almost certainly be partaking in that distasteful practice for the fourth straight home game when the Carolina Hurricanes take the ice against the Sabres here Monday. But at this point, 79 games into a lost season, it’s hard to argue.

With one more regulation loss, the Sabres will clinch 30th place in the NHL’s overall standing for the second straight year.

continued

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Afternoon Line- Kristina Rutherford On Evander Kane

Whether Kane will be the centrepiece of an exciting rebuild in Buffalo; whether he’ll stay healthy; whether he’ll achieve that 50-goal season he says is in his future; whether his track suits will stay out of the shower. A lot of eyes will be on this new-look Sabres team, and on Kane, though No. 9 has never been one to avoid the spotlight. “That’s what sports is,” he says. “It’s an entertainment business.”

-Kristina Rutherford of Sportsnet where you can read much more on Evander Kane.

Filed in: NHL Teams, Buffalo Sabres, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: evander+kane

The Sabres Lose, Or Did They Win?

from Mike Harrington of the Buffalo News,

There was an overtime winner scored Thursday night in First Niagara Center that sent tons of folks home happy. It was accompanied by loud cheers with fans leaping out of their seats, many with arms in the air.

One thing was missing: The goal horn. That’s because the goal wasn’t scored by the Sabres.

It came from Arizona’s Sam Gagner and gave the Coyotes a 4-3 win over Buffalo in a game played through what has to rate as one of the most awkward atmospheres in franchise history.

In the bizarro world of Tankapalooza 2015, Thursday’s defeat rates as a major victory in the turtle race for 30th overall in the NHL. The Coyotes moved six points ahead of Buffalo in 29th place. Buffalo has a game in hand but only eight games left, including Monday’s rematch in Glendale, Ariz.

It looks like a huge deficit for Buffalo to overcome. The fact is, however, the masses’ obsession with Connor McDavid or Jack Eichel means they want no part of it getting wiped out.

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, d, Buffalo Sabres, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

The Battle For Last Place

from Amy Moritz of the Buffalo News,

The motivation in the Buffalo Sabres locker room is clear and simple: Avoid finishing last.

That may ruffle the feathers of some in the team’s fan base who actively want the Sabres to finish 30th, thereby guaranteeing them at least the No. 2 overall draft pick. But athletes and coaches are wired to compete and at this point in the Sabres’ season, the most attainable goal they can compete for is 29th place.

“For sure you want to finish as high as you can,” Sabres captain Brian Gionta said Wednesday afternoon after practice in First Niagara Center. “In a season like this you gotta find little things to set your sights on and that’s definitely one of them.”

The stakes for 30th place are high Thursday night as the Sabres host the Arizona Coyotes.

The Coyotes are coming off an overtime win at Detroit, putting them five points ahead of the Sabres. Buffalo has nine games remaining, Arizona eight. They will meet again on Monday night in Arizona.

“Nobody wants to be in the position our two teams are in. Not one player,” Coyotes forward Shane Doan said. “You’re embarrassed. You have to be. Nobody ever wants to be considered the worst. Obviously, both teams are considered the two worst teams in the league. That’s not a good feeling.”

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, d, Buffalo Sabres, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

The Race For Last Place

from Mike Harrington of the Buffalo News,

It was a late night in the race for the bottom of the NHL's standings as the Sabres joined the Arizona Coyotes and Edmonton Oilers in escaping the Eastern Time Zone.

The biggest takeaway from Saturday: With 10 games left for the three contenders, this looks like a two-team "race" (yes, the quotes are intentional) between Darcy Regier's old team and the former Sabres GM's new team.

The Edmonton Oilers rallied from a 3-1 deficit and pulled out a 5-4 overtime win over Philadelphia in Saturday's final game, pushing six points ahead of the last-place Sabres. Buffalo and Arizona, meanwhile, both lost in regulation as they careen toward Thursday's bizarre showdown in First Niagara Center.

In today's Inside the NHL column, John Vogl writes that the upcoming pair of games against the Coyotes "might have as much impact as drafting Gilbert Perreault, trading for Dominik Hasek and letting Chris Drury and Daniel Briere walk away."

continued

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Tyler Myers And Drew Stafford Adding Punch To The Winnipeg Lineup

from Paul Friesen of the Winnipeg Sun,

At this rate, Evander Kane is going to have to become that 50-goal scorer he pegged himself to be.

Or else this will go down as the most lopsided trade the Winnipeg Jets have ever made.

As much as I initially said the deal that brought Tyler Myers and Drew Stafford here from Buffalo was tilted heavily in the Jets’ favour, I didn’t expect this.

Sure, Myers looked like a heavy minute-man, Stafford like a usable piece somewhere in the Jets’ top three lines.

Fifteen games after the move, two men who’d become used to losing on a team that’s gone straight to hell have become key parts of a winner hell-bent on a taste of playoff heaven.

“So far it’s been an unbelievable experience here,” Stafford was saying, Friday, some 15 hours after his latest exploits: a game-tying goal with six minutes left against St. Louis, and another in the shootout victory.

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, Buffalo Sabres, Winnipeg Jets, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Stop Winning Anders Lindback

from John Vogl of the Buffalo News,

Anders Lindback is a super guy. Really, he is. Folks from Nashville to Tampa Bay to New York City vouch for him. All it takes is one conversation with the goaltender for anyone to be convinced.

It’s a shame, then, that he’s on his way to becoming one of the most reviled Sabres ever.

The second-best stretch of Lindback’s career has Buffalo hockey fans cursing him in the name of Connor McDavid. The goalie stole three points this week that never should have been in Buffalo’s bank. If he keeps it up for the final 12 games, 30th place might become a thing of the past.

At any other time in Sabres history, Lindback would be a triumphant feel-good story. Instead, he’ll enter the crease Friday against New Jersey or Saturday in Nashville with Blue and Gold backers begging for him to fail.

What everyone will see is a guy playing like his life depends on it. That’s not far from the truth.

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, Buffalo Sabres, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: anders+lindback

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About Kukla's Korner Hockey

Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.

From breaking news to in-depth stories around the league, KK Hockey is updated with fresh stories all day long and will bring you the latest news as quickly as possible.

Email Paul anytime at pk@kuklaskorner.com

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