Conor Sheary scored twice Thursday. ©2019, Janet Schultz

Sabres dominate Penguins early, win Ralph Krueger’s debut as coach

PITTSBURGH – Throughout training camp, coach Ralph Krueger insisted his Sabres had embraced the new ideas he and his coaching staff brought to Buffalo.

Krueger wants the Sabres to play fast, stay connected and utilize their instincts. It might take sacrificing a little offense, but in the end, he believes they can reap rewards from the aggressive new approach.

Based on Thursday’s 3-1, season-opening win against the Penguins, Krueger’s message is getting through to the ... Read the full article

Sam Reinhart has never played an NHL playoff game. ©2019, Janet Schultz

Sabres’ Sam Reinhart excited to play for new coach Ralph Krueger

BUFFALO – Since the Sabres drafted high-scoring winger Sam Reinhart second overall in 2014, the team has employed four coaches, a ridiculous number.

Not surprisingly, Reinhart, who has played 331 regular-season NHL games, has never sniffed the postseason.

But last spring, Reinhart, 23, played some meaningful contests as Team Canada captured a silver medal at the World Championship in Slovakia. In 2016, fresh off his rookie season, he won a gold medal at the tournament.... Read the full article

Don Granato has an extensive coaching resume. ©2019, Hickling Images

Sabres hire Don Granato, Mike Bales as assistant coaches

BUFFALO – The Sabres have hired Don Granato and Mike Bales as assistant coaches on new head coach Ralph Krueger’s staff, the team announced this morning.

The Sabres also officially announced Krueger will retain assistant Steve Smith, a former NHL defenseman he had on his staff with the Edmonton Oilers.

Granato, 51, has coached at all levels – junior, college, pro and NHL – over his 26-year career. He spent the last two seasons ... Read the full article

Mike Bales won two Stanley Cups in Pittsburgh. ©2019, Hickling Images

Reports: Sabres to hire Mike Bales as goalie coach, retain Steve Smith

The Buffalo Sabres will hire Mike Bales as their new goalie coach and retain assistant coach Steve Smith, according to multiple reports.

Bales, 47, resigned as goalie coach of the Carolina Hurricanes on Wednesday. The Buffalo News, The Athletic and Sportsnet all reported Bales is bound for Buffalo.

Former Sabres coach Phil Housley hired Smith, a three-time Stanley Cup winner as a player, to run his defense last year. Ralph Krueger, Housley’s replacement, ... Read the full article

Ralph Krueger will be the 19th coach in Sabres history. ©2019, Hickling Images

Report: Sabres to name Ralph Krueger next coach

When Buffalo Sabres general manager Jason Botterill fired Phil Housley five weeks ago, he started pursuing experienced coaching candidates.

The Sabres struggled for two seasons under Housley, a first-time head coach, so not surprisingly, Botterill wanted a veteran to lead his team.

As expected, plenty of familiar names – Jacques Martin and Dave Tippett, for example – materialized as candidates.

Then in the last week, an intriguing name began popping up: Ralph Krueger, who coached ... Read the full article

Jack Eichel pins the Sabres' woes on the players. ©2019, Hickling Images

Sabres’ inability to find coaching stability has contributed to demise

BUFFALO – In less than five seasons with the Sabres, defenseman Zach Bogosian has already played for three coaches.

“Three coaches in this amount of years, you’ve got to really take a long, hard look (at yourself),” Bogosian said Monday, a day after the Sabres fired Phil Housley following an awful second half.

Not long ago, the Sabres were a model of coaching stability. Lindy Ruff lasted through three ownership regimes over 16 years. When ... Read the full article

Phil Housley began his Hall of Fame playing career with the Sabres. ©2019, Hickling Images

Sabres’ second-half regression cost Phil Housley his job

BUFFALO – Even as the Sabres stumbled and lost their grip on a playoff spot early in the winter, it seemed like coach Phil Housley would return next season unless the team totally fell apart down the stretch.

Well, the Sabres imploded, losing 16 of 17 games before winning their final two outings. That marked the first time they won back-to-back games since Dec. 11 and 13.

On Sunday, a day after the Sabres finished ... Read the full article

Jason Botterill will head overseas next month. ©2019, Hickling Images

Sabres notes: Jason Botterill reluctant to talk about coaching search

BUFFALO – Out of respect for Phil Housley, the coach he fired hours earlier Sunday, Jason Botterill wouldn’t reveal what he’s looking for in a replacement. The Sabres general manager did, however, say a search has already started.

“Those are things I’m not going to talk about too much right now, and the simple fact is I just had a conversation with Phil Housley a couple of hours ago,” Botterill said Sunday afternoon inside KeyBank ... Read the full article

The Sabres ranked first overall in late November. ©2019, Hickling Images

Sabres’ awful second half led to Phil Housley’s dismissal

BUFFALO – The Sabres fired Phil Housley this afternoon, less than a day after the team completed a disappointing season in which it fell from first overall in late November to sixth in the Atlantic Division.

Even as the Sabres stumbled and lost their grip on a playoff spot early in the winter, it seemed like Housley would return for a third season unless the team totally imploded down the stretch.

Well, the Sabres fell ... Read the full article

Phil Housley lasted two seasons with the Sabres. ©2019, Hickling Images

Sabres fire coach Phil Housley

BUFFALO – The Sabres fired Phil Housley this afternoon, less than a day after the team completed a disappointing season in which it fell from first overall in late November to sixth in the Atlantic Division.

Even as the Sabres stumbled and lost their grip on a playoff spot early in the winter, it seemed like Housley would return for a third season unless the team totally imploded down the stretch.

Well, the Sabres fell ... Read the full article