Dan Bylsma didn't know Andrew Allen. ©2015, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Sabres’ Dan Bylsma impressed by goalie coach Andrew Allen

BUFFALO – Sabres coach Dan Bylsma had no previous connection to Andrew Allen before hiring the 38-year-old as goalie coach this week.

“Really word of mouth and had some great recommendations from people in Chicago,” Bylsma said Friday inside the First Niagara Center. “So I got to know him in the last week or 10 days and got him in here a little bit earlier this week.”

Allen, a former pro goalie, spent the last ... Read the full article

A fan shows off his new Jack Eichel jersey Friday. ©2015, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Sabres notes: Jack Eichel chooses No. 15; Andrew Allen hired as goalie coach

BUFFALO – Jack Eichel’s not thinking too far ahead. But “if the opportunity presented itself to make the team” next season, he plans to wear No. 15.

Of course, minutes after he mentioned his first NHL number Friday morning, the Sabres tweeted they would be a selling a limited number of Eichel jerseys hours later at the First Niagara Center prior to the development camp scrimmage.

Before the gates even opened, the line stretched from ... Read the full article

Dan Bylsma completed his staff today. ©2015, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Sabres hire Andrew Allen as goalie coach

BUFFALO – The Sabres completed their NHL coaching staff this morning, announcing they have hired Andrew Allen as goalie coach.

The 38-year-old Allen spent the last four seasons as the Chicago Blackhawks’ developmental goaltending coach, overseeing the netminders with the AHL Rockford IceHogs. Allen spent three seasons as St. Lawrence University’s goalie coach and also coached in Japan before joining the Blackhawks.

He played pro hockey for five seasons, spending time in the AHL and ... Read the full article

Dan Lambert coached the Kelowna Rockets last season. ©2015, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Sabres hire Dan Lambert as assistant coach

BUFFALO – When development camp began Monday, there was an unfamiliar face on the ice putting the Sabres prospects through drills inside the First Niagara Center.

Who was it?

During the first session, the Sabres officially announced Dan Lambert’s hire as the third assistant on coach Dan Bylsma’s staff.

The 45-year-old Lambert coached the Kelowna Rockets last year, leading the junior club to a Western Hockey League championship and a Memorial Cup appearance in his ... Read the full article

Cody Hodgson scored six goals last season. ©2015, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Awful season costs Cody Hodgson job with Sabres

BUFFALO – Cody Hodgson’s Sabres career is over.

The team put the struggling winger on unconditional waivers Monday, meaning the final four seasons of his six-year, $25.5 million contract will be bought out for one-third the remaining value since he’s under 26 years old.

The Sabres owe him $6.333 million over the next eight years, money that will count against the salary cap until 2022-23, according to generalfanager.com. They must absorb a $1,041,666 hit ... Read the full article

Arturs Irbe spent one season in Buffalo. ©2015, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Sabres won’t keep goalie coach Arturs Irbe

BUFFALO – Goalie coach Arturs Irbe won’t return for a second season with the Sabres, new coach Dan Bylsma told WGR this morning.

Bylsma said he talked to some potential coaches at the NHL Draft over the weekend and one could be hired in the next week.

The loquacious Irbe was the only coach Sabres general manager Tim Murray retained after firing former coach Ted Nolan on April 12. Murray said then he would leave ... Read the full article

Dave Barr played 614 NHL games before his coaching career. ©2015, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Sabres land experienced assistants in Terry Murray, Dave Barr

BUFFALO – Dan Bylsma let it slip. Instead of waiting for the press release to come out, the new Sabres coach announced the first two assistants to his staff – veteran NHL coach Terry Murray and Dave Barr – during a news conference Thursday.

“We didn’t save the release for this afternoon,” Bylsma joked inside the First Niagara Center.

Former Sabres coaches Ted Nolan and Ron Rolston had trouble finding assistants the last two years ... Read the full article

Dan Bylsma added his first two assistants today. ©2015, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Sabres hire Terry Murray, Dave Barr as assistant coaches

BUFFALO – Dan Bylsma let it slip. Instead of waiting for the press release to come out, the new Sabres coach announced the first two assistants to his staff – veteran NHL coach Terry Murray and Dave Barr – during a news conference this morning.

“We didn’t save the release for this afternoon,” Bylsma joked inside the First Niagara Center.

Murray, Sabres general manager Tim Murray’s uncle, spent 15 seasons as an NHL head coach. ... Read the full article

From left, Sabres general manager Tim Murray, coach Dan Bylsma and owner Terry Pegula hold up a No. 15 Bylsma jersey Thursday. ©2015, Margaret Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Dan Bylsma had eye on Sabres job

BUFFALO – There was a time before the Sabres hired Dan Bylsma on Thursday that the coach and general manager Tim Murray both represented the Anaheim Mighty Ducks.

Back in the early 2000s, as Bylsma finished up his journeyman playing career, Murray was the team’s director of player personnel.

“I complained about him a lot,” Murray cracked Thursday during a news conference to introduce Bylsma as the Sabres’ 17th coach in franchise history. “That’s ... Read the full article

Ted Nolan was fired Sunday. ©2015, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Former Sabres coach Ted Nolan and GM Tim Murray never meshed

BUFFALO – The odds, of course, were stacked against Ted Nolan succeeding in his second run as Sabres coach, which ended with his firing Sunday night, less than a day after a 30th-place finish.

Nolan wasn’t truly Tim Murray’s guy. Sure, the general manager awarded him a three-year contract late last season. But old friend Pat LaFontaine hired Nolan as interim coach early in 2013-14 before leaving months later.

Perhaps Murray felt obligated ... Read the full article