James Patrick had coached with the Sabres since 2006-07. ©2013, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Sabres fire assistant coaches Patrick and Adams as Rolston begins assembling staff

BUFFALO – The Sabres have fired assistant coaches James Patrick and Kevyn Adams, according to multiple reports.

It was believed new Sabres coach Ron Rolston, whose interim tag was removed Tuesday, would make some changes to his staff.

The reports state assistant Teppo Numminen will stay on. The status of goalie coach Jim Corsi is unclear.

Other than one year playing in Europe, Patrick has been a Sabres player or coach since 1998-99. The ... Read the full article

Kevyn Adams (left) was a regular assistant coach for Tyler Ennis and the Sabres since 2011-12 ©2013, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Reports: Sabres fire assistant coaches Patrick and Adams

BUFFALO – The Sabres have fired assistant coaches James Patrick and Kevyn Adams, according to multiple reports.

It was believed new Sabres coach Ron Rolston, whose interim tag was removed Tuesday, would make some changes to his staff.

The reports state assistant Teppo Numminen will stay on.

Other than one year playing in Europe, Patrick has been a Sabres player or coach since 1998-99. The 49-year-old former defenseman, a top aid of former coach Lindy ... Read the full article

Ron Rolston had never coached in the NHL prior to his Feb. 20 promotion. ©2013, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

New coach Rolston quickly convinced Sabres he was their man

BUFFALO – Hours after Ron Rolston replaced Lindy Ruff on an interim basis Feb. 20, the new Sabres coach walked into a Toronto hotel and addressed a room full of shocked players.

Most veterans knew nothing about Rolston, a college, junior-age and AHL coach for 23 years. The 46-year-old had never spent one day in the NHL.

“You’re always wondering what’s going to happen when he first comes in,” Sabres winger Steve Ott said ... Read the full article

Ron Rolston is the 16th coach in franchise history. ©2013, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Sabres keep Rolston to coach rebuilding club

BUFFALO – When Darcy Regier promoted Ron Rolston to interim coach Feb. 20, the Sabres general manager originally planned to interview other candidates following the season.

But as the campaign progressed, Regier noticed Rolston’s motivating and teaching talents. That the Sabres finished 12th in the Eastern Conference and missed the playoffs didn’t matter.

Regier wanted Rolston, a noted talent developer, to take over the young, rebuilding club.

He never spoke to anyone else.... Read the full article

Ron Rolston took over on an interim basis Feb. 20. ©2013, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Sabres name Rolston 16th coach in franchise history

BUFFALO – The Sabres today named Ron Rolston, the team’s interim coach since Feb. 20, the 16th coach in franchise history.

The 46-year-old went 15-11-5 after taking over for Lindy Ruff. The Sabres summoned him from Rochester, where he had led the AHL Americans since 2011-12.

Rolston and Sabres general manager Darcy Regier, who said last week he would decide Rolston’s future quickly, plan to address the media at 11 a.m. inside the ... Read the full article

Toronto star Joffrey Lupul skates Monday morning. ©2013, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Upstart Leafs used Sabres’ abandoned philosophies as blueprint to success

TORONTO – Think about it, Buffalo Sabres fans, a couple of years ago, your team switched identities with the hated, mega-market Maple Leafs.

As the small-market Sabres morphed into a free-spending, win-at-all-costs club under new owner Terry Pegula, the Leafs began embracing development and patience, the Sabres’ old and successful philosophies.

The Leafs’ major volte-face has quickly paid off. They finished fifth this season, their highest spot since 2003-04.

Inside a noisy Air Canada Centre ... Read the full article

Cody McCormick just finished his first AHL stint since 2009-10. ©2013, Rochester Americans

McCormick hopeful of return to Sabres following strong Amerks stint

ROCHESTER – In an instant, Cody McCormick vanished from the NHL.

On Feb. 20, the struggling Buffalo Sabres waived the gritty forward mid-practice, then immediately yanked him from the ice, a demeaning exit for a popular veteran who fought 26 times during his 139-game tenure.

McCormick then showered, left the First Niagara Center and went home. He reported to the Americans after clearing waivers the next day, his first AHL stint since 2009-10.... Read the full article

Zemgus Girgensons scored three times in three playoff games. ©2013, Dan Hickling Olean Times Herald

Sabres prospect Girgensons dynamic during Amerks’ short playoff run

ROCHESTER – Interim Americans coach Chadd Cassidy called the AHL a “man’s league,” and, well, Zemgus Girgensons is still a kid, just 19 years old.

As a teenage rookie, Girgensons was supposed to play a supporting role during the Amerks’ first-round playoff series against the powerhouse Toronto Marlies. The Latvian winger scored only six goals in 61 regular-season games this year.

But Girgensons, a hard-hitting prospect the Buffalo Sabres moved up to select 14th... Read the full article

Mikhail Grigorenko played about 90 games in three leagues this season. ©2013, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Sabres prospect Grigorenko ‘tired mentally’ after marathon season ends with Amerks

ROCHESTER – Nine months, three leagues and about 90 games later, Mikhail Grigorenko’s whirlwind season is over.

Each stop – the QMJHL, the NHL and finally the AHL – energized the 18-year-old Russian, who just joined the Americans for their first-round playoff series.

Still, after Wednesday’s 3-2 overtime loss to the Toronto Marlies eliminated the Amerks, the center acknowledged the long campaign had worn him out.

“A little bit I’m tired mentally,” Grigorenko said inside ... Read the full article

Jhonas Enroth played well down the stretch. ©2013, Dan Hickling, Olean Times Herald

Sabres backup Enroth feels ready to be No. 1 goalie following strong finish

BUFFALO – After 45 NHL starts, Sabres backup Jhonas Enroth believes he’s ready to assume regular duty. The 24-year-old wants to be a No. 1 goalie badly.

There’s just one problem.

“Ryan’s the starter here,” Enroth said Saturday as the Sabres cleaned out their lockers inside the First Niagara Center.

But how much longer will Ryan Miller be the starter?

It’s widely believed the Sabres will try to trade the franchise goalie following their disappointing ... Read the full article