Chris Taylor played and coached with Rochester. ©2020, Micheline Veluvolu, Rochester Americans

Sabres’ decision to fire Amerks coach Chris Taylor looks foolish

In 2017, former general manager Jason Botterill and his assistant, Randy Sexton, took an unusual first step in rebuilding the Buffalo Sabres’ struggling AHL affiliate, the Rochester Americans.

Barely a year after the Sabres’ previous regime had let Chris Taylor go as an assistant coach from the Amerks, Botterill and Sexton, who also served as Rochester’s GM, rehired him as head coach.

The move made sense. Taylor, who was fired again Tuesday, spent his ... Read the full article

Randy Sexton (left) and Jason Botterill spent three years with the Sabres. ©2020, Micheline Veluvolu, Rochester Americans

Disconnect with Pegulas costs Jason Botterill job as Sabres GM

If the NHL could’ve held its draft as scheduled next week, Jason Botterill would likely still be employed as the Buffalo Sabres’ general manager. But the COVID-19 pandemic forced the league to postpone the annual event until the fall.

The extra time gave Sabres owners Terry and Kim Pegula an opportunity to discuss and plan the team’s future – “Really start digging in,” Kim Pegula said on a Zoom call Tuesday to discuss Botterill’s firing ... Read the full article

Chris Taylor spent three years as Rochester’s coach. ©2020, Micheline Veluvolu, Rochester Americans

Sabres fire Amerks coach Chris Taylor and assistants

In his three years as Rochester Americans coach, Chris Taylor helped re-energize the Buffalo Sabres’ moribund AHL affiliate.

For the first time in years, the Amerks morphed into a consistent winner. Players, meanwhile, regularly raved about the affable Taylor and his staff.

When the Sabres needed an assistant to fill in behind the bench early this season, they elevated Taylor, who is often talked about as a future NHL coach.

But on Tuesday, hours after ... Read the full article

Sabres owner Terry Pegula (left) and Kevyn Adams, his new general, have known each other a long time. ©2020, Micheline Veluvolu, Rochester Americans

After firing Jason Botterill, Sabres will go forward as ‘leaner’ operation

If the NHL could’ve held its draft as scheduled next week, Jason Botterill would likely still be employed as the Buffalo Sabres’ general manager. But the COVID-19 pandemic forced the league to postpone the annual event until the fall.

The extra time gave Sabres owners Terry and Kim Pegula an opportunity to discuss and plan the team’s future – “Really start digging in,” Kim Pegula said on a Zoom call Tuesday to discuss Botterill’s firing ... Read the full article

Jimmy Vesey grew up outside of Boston. ©2020, Micheline Veluvolu

Sabres’ Jimmy Vesey vows to be ‘part of the solution’ on race, inequality

Jimmy Vesey became the first Buffalo Sabres player to speak out about the death of George Floyd and the violence and racial tension in the United States in a reflective essay he posted on Twitter late Wednesday afternoon.

“The videos I’ve seen online are gut-wrenching,” wrote Vesey, who made an undisclosed monetary donation to the NAACP Boston Branch. “Whether it’s seeing extreme injustices by law enforcement against people of color or seeing fellow Americans beat ... Read the full article

Terry and Kim Pegula said they “are saddened and angered by the actions of those involved in the senseless killing of George Floyd.” ©2020, Hickling Images

Pegulas issue statement calling for end of racial inequality

Buffalo Bills and Sabres owners Terry and Kim Pegula on Monday night joined the growing number of pro sports owners to issue a statement condemning the killing of George Floyd and calling for the end of racial inequality.

Floyd, an African American, died May 25 in police custody in Minneapolis. Video captured Derek Chauvin, a white police officer, kneeling on Floyd’s neck for nearly nine minutes. Floyd was unarmed.

Protests erupted all over the country, ... Read the full article

Jason Pominville scored an emotional goal on Feb. 13, 2009. ©2020, Janet Schultz

Five ‘Sabres Classics,’ including win after Flight 3407 crash, to air

Five more “Sabres Classics” – this time an array of regular-season and exhibition games from the franchise’s 50-year history – will be rebroadcast on MSG next week.

The games are being aired because the COVID-19 pandemic forced the NHL to suspend its season indefinitely March 12.... Read the full article

Casey Mittelstadt and Rasmus Asplund leave the ice after a game in 2019-20. ©2020, Micheline Veluvolu, Rochester Americans

Cancellation of AHL season means lost opportunities for Amerks

In what would be the final days of the American Hockey League season, coach Chris Taylor drew confidence from the maturity his Rochester Americans began showcasing.

To Taylor, the Amerks’ response to some rare adversity – they endured losing streaks of seven and four games in the winter – illustrated his players had become equipped to handle the highs and lows of a long, grinding season.

“They weren’t getting as frustrated as you think that ... Read the full article

Jeff Skinner has donated 5,000 protective face shields. ©2020, Micheline Veluvolu

Sabres’ Jack Eichel, Jeff Skinner make huge donations to COVID-19 response

Buffalo Sabres stars Jack Eichel and Jeff Skinner have joined owners Terry and Kim Pegula in making large donations to the local COVID-19 response.

Eichel announced Wednesday he has purchased 5,000 protective face shields from Bauer, whose hockey gear he has worn during his NHL career, that will be distributed to hospitals throughout Western New York.

Skinner, meanwhile, has donated $53,000 to the Western New York COVID-19 Community Response Fund, an organization formed by 18 ... Read the full article

Terry and Kim Pegula want to focus on the local community. ©2020, Micheline Veluvolu

PSE pledges $1.2 million to help COVID-19 pandemic response

Pegula Sports and Entertainment has pledged to donate at least $1.2 million to Western New York residents during the COVID-19 pandemic, Buffalo Bills and Sabres owners Terry and Kim Pegula announced Wednesday.

“We realize we are in uncertain times as a nation and as a community,” PSE president and CEO Kim Pegula said in a statement. “Like many Western New Yorkers, we are faced with making difficult decisions, but we realize that focusing on the ... Read the full article