It’s over

Archive:
Regier

Tim Murray discussed the Sabres' future bluntly Tuesday. ©2014, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald
Bill Hoppe     Olean Times Herald
0

BUFFALO – Tim Murray has thought about how an NHL team could tank a season. The general manager even discussed some scenarios with the media. But he has no intention of keeping the Sabres at the bottom of the league.

With a couple of franchise-altering talents available in the 2015 draft, plenty of teams could purposely field less-than-stellar lineups next year.

The Sabres, whose previous regime played for draft picks, won’t be among them.

“I don’t know how to do it properly, I …

Read More --->
Mike Weber talks to the media Monday. ©2014, Margaret Hickling, Olean Times Herald
Bill Hoppe     Olean Times Herald
1

BUFFALO – Mike Weber spoke passionately, like a man embarrassed by what he had just experienced. The worst season in the Sabres’ 43-year history clearly jolted the defenseman.

“You don’t want that feeling walking around town that you’ve disappointed people or you’re letting people down, especially a hardworking city like Buffalo,” Weber said Monday inside the First Niagara Center. “I think to every man we’ve accepted the challenge.”

Weber talked about changing the team’s culture, eliminating excuses and playing hockey for the …

Read More --->
Mike Weber talks to the media this morning. ©2014, Margaret Hickling, Olean Times Herald
Bill Hoppe     Olean Times Herald
0

BUFFALO – Almost a year ago, well before the rebuilding Sabres started what would quickly become the most tumultuous season in franchise history, defenseman Mike Weber heard about former general manager Darcy Regier’s warning the team’s rabid fan base would endure some suffering.

“To be honest with you, you hear those things but you never think things are going to get as bad as they did,” Weber said this morning as the Sabres cleaned out their lockers and held their end-of-season …

Read More --->
Thomas Vanek played his first game back in Buffalo on Sunday. ©2014, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald
Bill Hoppe     Olean Times Herald
0

BUFFALO – Back in the summer, Thomas Vanek had a simple, straightforward question for the Sabres. The slick winger wanted to know what direction the team was going.

“No one really had an answer,” Vanek said Sunday prior to the Montreal Canadiens’ 2-0 win against Sabres, his first game back here. “That’s when I kind of made up my mind July 1 (unrestricted free agency) was probably a goal of mine.”

The Sabres, of course, traded Vanek, their co-captain, to the New …

Read More --->
The Sabres recalled Nathan Lieuwen today. ©2014, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald
Bill Hoppe     Olean Times Herald
0

The Sabres recalled goalie Nathan Lieuwen from Rochester today. What’s the 22-year-old endured to make the NHL?

A lot.

I wrote this in July 2011 just a couple of weeks after the Sabres drafted him.

LEWISTON – Yeah, Nathan Lieuwen thought the worst. The Buffalo Sabres goalie prospect is only human, you know. He knew the two scary concussions that had derailed his promising junior hockey career could potentially force him to retire as teenager.

“It crossed my mind,” Lieuwen, the 167th pick by …

Read More --->
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 …

Read More --->
Pat LaFontaine (left) shakes Tim Murray's hand Jan. 9. ©2014, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald
Bill Hoppe     Olean Times Herald
0

BUFFALO – In a stunning development, Sabres legend Pat LaFontaine, the team’s president of hockey operations less than four months, resigned today.

LaFontaine will return to the job he had with the NHL.

According to TVA’s Renaud Lavoie, the last straw for LaFontaine was Friday’s blockbuster deal in which the Sabres sent Ryan Miller to the St. Louis Blues.

LaFontaine wanted to give the 33-year-old Miller an extension. New general manager Tim Murray, who LaFontaine hired in January, wanted to deal the franchise …

Read More --->
Pat LaFontaine smiles Tuesday. ©2014, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald
Bill Hoppe     Olean Times Herald
0

BUFFALO – The old school part of hockey, Pat LaFontaine said, is earning your keep. There has to be a standard. Players must perform consistently once they crack the NHL.

LaFontaine, a Hockey Hall of Famer, skated on the fourth line as a teenage NHL phenom. Legendary New York Islanders coach Al Arbour wouldn’t let him take a defensive-zone faceoff for years.

Former general manager Darcy Regier gave 19-year-old Sabres prospect Mikhail Grigorenko a roster spot during the summer. The team’s new …

Read More --->
Mikhail Grigorenko feels he belongs in the NHL. ©2014, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald
Bill Hoppe     Olean Times Herald
2

BUFFALO – Interim coach Ted Nolan said Mikhail Grigorenko “was a little bit upset” when the Sabres told the 19-year-old prospect he was going back to the QMJHL’s Quebec Remparts.

“But this is non-negotiable,” Nolan said Saturday inside the Riverside Ice Rink. “It’s one of those things that has to be done.”

The Sabres didn’t understand just how much the demotion irked the Russian center.

Grigorenko won’t be reporting to the junior club, his agent, Jay Grossman, told the Times Herald hours later. …

Read More --->
Tim Murray speaks to the media Thursday. ©2014, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald
Bill Hoppe     Olean Times Herald
1

BUFFALO – Ottawa general manager Bryan Murray recently approached his nephew, Tim Murray, and told him the rebuilding Sabres, the NHL’s worst team, wanted permission to interview him for the vacant GM position.

Murray would be leaving what he called “comfortable situation” as the Senators’ assistant GM. The 50-year-old’s from the Ottawa area. His wife and children live there. Many speculated he would replace his uncle someday. At the very least, he acknowledged, he would’ve been a candidate to run his …

Read More --->