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Archive:
Pegula

Drew Stafford has noticed the community coming together following the Bills sale. ©2014, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald
Bill Hoppe     Olean Times Herald
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BUFFALO – It wasn’t hard for Sabres winger Drew Stafford to see the excitement Terry and Kim Pegula’s purchase of the Buffalo Bills has generated around town.

“Everyone’s kind of got a little bit of a jump in their step,” Stafford said this morning, a day after Sabres owner Terry Pegula added the NFL franchise to his family’s growing sports empire.

The acquisition, Stafford said, is “bringing everyone together” around Buffalo.

“There’s a lot of positivity around,” the longest-tenured Sabre said. “It seems like …

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Terry Pegula bought the Sabres in 2011. ©2014, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald
Bill Hoppe     Olean Times Herald
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Buffalo Sabres owner Terry Pegula and his wife, Kim, released this statement today following their purchase of the Buffalo Bills:

“Kim and I are humbled and honored that the Wilson family has chosen us to be the second owner of the Buffalo Bills. Pending the NFL approval process, being the next owner of the Buffalo Bills would be a great privilege for our family. Ralph Wilson left an indelible mark on our community and we will strive every day to honor his legacy.

Our …

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Terry Pegula's passion struck a chord with Sabres fans. ©2014, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald
Bill Hoppe     Olean Times Herald
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To a certain degree, the euphoria sweeping through Western New York today was felt once before, on Feb. 22, 2011, when Terry Pegula was introduced as the Sabres’ fourth owner.

Of course, Pegula’s reported purchase of the Buffalo Bills is much different.

While the Sabres weren’t in danger of moving, there was a feeling he had rescued the franchise. With the Sabres among the NHL’s bottom-feeders, it’s easy to forget now, but that day was among the most emotional sports days in …

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Ted Black (left) and Colin Campbell talk Monday. ©2014, Margaret Hickling, Olean Times Herald
Bill Hoppe     Olean Times Herald
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BUFFALO – To Colin Campbell, who’s spent his life in hockey as a player, coach and executive, this city has a special place in the game.

“Buffalo, for a lot of hockey people, is almost like an Original Six team,” Campbell, the senior executive vice president of NHL Hockey Operations, said Monday in announcing the Sabres had landed the NHL Scouting Combine. “It’s been here for a long time, a lot of history here and a lot of things have happened …

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Brian Gionta was all smiles Wednesday. ©2014, Margaret Hickling, Olean Times Herald
Bill Hoppe     Olean Times Herald
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BUFFALO – Brian Gionta’s ties to Western New York run deep. The winger grew up in suburban Rochester rooting for the Sabres, his new team. Before attending Boston College, he played junior hockey with the Niagara Scenic. He still lives in Greece, his lifelong home.

Playing here earlier in his career would’ve been difficult, Gionta said Wednesday during an introductory news conference inside the First Niagara Center.

But right now, Gionta’s a 35-year-old whose goal production has dropped in recent seasons. Leadership, …

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Tim Murray (left) shakes Brian Gionta's hand today. ©2014, Margaret Hickling, Olean Times Herald
Bill Hoppe     Olean Times Herald
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BUFFALO – The five new players the Sabres acquired Tuesday will make it harder for them to re-sign Steve Ott, the popular former captain they traded in February.

“I don’t know if he’s a possibility,” Sabres general manager Tim Murray said this afternoon inside the First Niagara Center. “I talked to his agent last night after I talked to you guys. I explained to him with what we did yesterday, it would make it more difficult. But what we may do …

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Christian Ehrhoff will sign another big contract soon. ©2014, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald
Bill Hoppe     Olean Times Herald
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BUFFALO – Despite a manageable $4 million cap hit and $22 million of Christian Ehrhoff’s 10-year, $40 million contract already paid, the Sabres didn’t want to keep the defenseman.

Why?

If Ehrhoff retired early, the Sabres could’ve been charged a huge cap recapture penalty, as much as $10 million, according to capgeek.com. Imagine having that dead money eating up space when the Sabres need to lock up their youngsters in several years.

So the Sabres used their second compliance buyout on the final …

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Terry Pegula believes Ralph Wilson's contributions as Bills owner were "immeasurable." ©2014, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald
Bill Hoppe     Olean Times Herald
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The Sabres issued the following statement today from owners Terry and Kim Pegula following the passing of Buffalo Bills owner Ralph Wilson Jr.:

“The entire Buffalo Sabres organization was saddened to learn of the passing of Ralph Wilson, Jr. His contributions to the city of Buffalo over his 50-plus years of owning the Bills were immeasurable and his legacy in Western New York and the sports world will be long-lasting. With his passion for the game and never-ending loyalty to the …

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Ted Black (left) and Tim Murray discuss the Sabres' tumultuous weekend Sunday. ©2014, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald
Bill Hoppe     Olean Times Herald
1

BUFFALO – A Sabres icon bolted less than four months after returning to the team he loved. The franchise goalie and captain got traded.

The Sabres just endured perhaps the most trying weekend in their 43-year history. That was before the popular coach sounded like he might want to leave.

“It’s a lot for our fans to swallow in a short amount of time,” Sabres president Ted Black said Sunday, a day after Pat LaFontaine abruptly resigned as president of hockey operations.

Black …

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Ted Black (left) and Tim Murray address the media this afternoon. ©2014, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald
Bill Hoppe     Olean Times Herald
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BUFFALO – Sabres president Ted Black understands Pat LaFontaine’s stunning resignation as president of hockey operations  creates uncertainty for a team that had finally seemed to stabilize itself.

“It’s something that fans are going to be upset by,” Black said this afternoon inside the First Niagara Center, a day after LaFontaine abruptly bolted from the organization after less than four months.

Still, Black said, LaFontaine was only one person.

“I don’t know if it impacts the greater mission and will deter us,” he …

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