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WBEN NewsRadio 930>Audio & Video on Demand>>Buffalo Sabres Unveil New Coach, Management

Buffalo Sabres Unveil New Coach, Management

Nov 13, 2013|

The news conference announcing Pat LaFontaine as President of Hockey Operations, and Ted Nolan as interim coach.

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Automatically Generated Transcript (may not be 100% accurate)

At this time I'd like to. Turn it over to the Buffalo Sabres owner -- from the look. But. And here to announce that. Last night. I really -- -- -- of his duties as the Buffalo Sabres general manager. And round Ralston and as our head coach. I would like to thank you Darcy for use. Seventeen or so odd years of dedicated service to the sabres. His work and commitment and were beyond. Done a lot of work within the last. Couple years since I bought the team and Darcy was a dedicated. -- employee. I have a lot of respect for diversity -- -- And I even have more respect for him after I talk to him last night. Brian Rolston. Also a lot of respect for Iran -- is very very good man. And I also feel the same way about Ron. After talking to him last night as you all know. We didn't exactly put run in the best of situations that after ten minutes. As our head coach. With some of the moves we've made. In the direction we've been taking the franchise but I wish. Both of those gentlemen best. Today I wanna announce the creation of a new. Title and the sabres organization president of hockey operations. And that Fella named Pat LaFontaine. Who you may know. We'll -- that. We'll fill that role. And would also like to announced that Ted Nolan will be our interim. Head coach. Effective today. I -- Only met Ted last night but I've met mr. LaFontaine a few times over the last couple years. And over the last week had a lot of discussions with -- -- He is. A class. Individual. And -- he's going -- a lot of energy. To our organization. As I have stated in the past. My goals for this organization have not changed. We all know what they are. Pat said to me something interest being. Last week he said you know -- of them won the Stanley Cup but. I can't think. Of a better place to become a champion. And with the Buffalo Sabres. So would that. I would like to turn over. To dead I'm so. We're not asking. Two years. Two years. Eight months and 22 days. That's how long period equivalent Kimball ruled on the Buffalo Sabres. And if you look around. This arena if you look around the people. And you don't need to do -- that crane your -- and turn around behind you it. Building that's coming up. The ground. There's been a lot of changes a lot of positive. Changes made -- the -- goes and I want to thank you Terry for that and I'm sure everyone here thank you for that. But as we would remind you and you would remind us. That's. That isn't the accomplishment we want to put on. Our head stones are all done. We're about winning. Creating a winning franchise. And today we take -- a huge step forward in that effort. Today we go forward as a unified. Organization. Where this ownership. Management. Coaching players. Ever win here all of our fans. Where one team. And we're all going to be pulling in one direction. And today we welcome two new teammates. To our line up. With Ted Nolan and Pat LaFontaine. And I did -- gives me great pleasure to introduce pat and his accomplishments. Can easily be summarized. Hall of Famer. Patents. Been very active in the community and and charities. I can tell you -- is a better person than he ever was a hockey player. And -- comes to us most immediately from the National Hockey League where he was quickly. Establishing himself as one of bill Daley's. Most trusted. Senior executives and we're very fortunate. That the timing was right to bring -- back where he belongs with the Buffalo Sabres. So friends and fans who gives me great pleasure to introduce. Mr. Patrick Michael LaFontaine. -- -- It's interesting how things come full circle. I just have to -- one thing I think it was sixteen years ago. Kind of like that number. I'm extremely proud to be here today to be represented as president of hockey operations of Buffalo Sabres. I know this town I know this city it's one of the hardest working most passionate city fans. I can promise you the hard work and passion that's here. I'll get that same effort and my new job and make sure from the top to bottom we have that same feeling. I have to think that to a family especially to thank him for. This great privilege to -- to lead this organization in the hockey department and let me tell you something. They're among the finest owners. And all sports. We are so lucky here in buffalo. To have these types of owners who not only care about this organization we care about this community care about the fans I can attest that. I'd like to thank -- black looking forward to. The hockey operations working hand in hand with this -- department to look forward to working -- Ted thank you. I like to also say that. Seymour Knox and already not so great Knox family who brought the team here. The word savior comes back from a weapon that was given to leaders pass on. I feel very privileged and lucky that the coolest pass that on to me and I'll share that with the rest of the team. I'm looking forward to building in the hockey department I'm looking forward to be part of this community. For a long time and most importantly like Terry said. Our job is to be top to bottom to bring -- championship caliber team. Here season after season. Now we need to patients in the hard work of the support of the fans because. We are in this for the long run and there is. The system that's set up right now but there's a lot of ways to build a team. I'd also like to congratulate. Ted Nolan who -- -- introduce here in the second. I would also like to wish to our shouldn't gear. And around lost and all the best and thank them for their contributions. And obviously. They're part of the receivers family. There's one thing mr. the coolant can do right away was. They wanted everybody to feel part of this and they brought faculty alumni. That's something that doesn't happen very often. I would like to say that in the interim I'll be working closely -- Kevin -- Obviously user assistant general manager. So anything that comes up will be working together on. Going forward I'll be looking for the next general manager. I've been very. Little bit of -- short list. And I can't tell you they are right now. But I'll be actively searching for the next general manager. I also want to thank the National Hockey League. Particular bill Daley for bringing me on board as vice president. Of hockey development community affairs -- two months ago and obviously Gary Bettman. For their understanding all of this and support. Computer the buffalo and obviously be the president of hockey operations. With all that said. My family's excited I couldn't be more excited I couldn't be more proud. To help lead this organization. We're I think we're going to be for a long time. And I'd like to say there's nobody I know better. Who can work in the locker room and bring -- a group of players together and I've seen it firsthand. Then Ted Nolan. I am proud to say that he's come in as. There's a very qualified man who's done a lot of great things in this game especially with the younger players. And I'm proud to say he's gonna finish out the year with us as an -- head coach and with that said. I don't turn it over today. Welcome aboard. Well I don't know where. We're we're beginning this is there's enough words in. Incite me to express how. How excited I really am. -- -- just -- took these -- Cemetery Kim -- for bestowing such. Are for for me to come back to the city that. I may have left physically put. Emotionally inspiration the -- left some big part of my my life. A big part of who I am. We're dealing here with. -- -- was himself back when they did so it's -- back I want I think battle hunting for a feeling the way he does feel won't mind my coaching abilities that hopefully I can bring some. Some credibility back into this organization I'm really looking forward to it. But meantime. When when patty called me a few days ago the one thing have to do immediately was. Contact my. Two groups those were two for us posted as a head coach of the Russian national. Men's hockey team which is one of receivers there's a chance coach why should the world championships and Kirk Gibson. He's fine that's fine young man is going to be a great time great player. So let's call them everyone I think -- -- hockey federation forgive me great opportunity to coach. Coach open they're from last year's who would qualify for the Olympic teams issues who will be in -- Mentioned that would be able to to continue my mind do you do with the Olympic team so I'm looking for that's all themselves could -- Disability it's been awhile some time. So here and and there's a lot of a lot of things has been transpiring my life and in a lot of people who. Who were there. And those who know the things and worked up and in to -- me -- nearly. With Monica wildcats in this rather -- you create opportunity coach -- parent -- some of the younger players that are that are stars and pretty well. Closest stars in the national committee and Graham marsh and -- Cancun and and a few others Angeles Donald plays and him -- -- to go there and continue to work with him and I Wear these beast they also one review. As pat has why else have a charity in the end -- with Tim Hortons children's foundation -- wanted to thank them for their. There help last five years that we have a partnership with our foundations and indeed some kids an opportunity what. But all in all all of this. All the time I was away from. There was one moment that it every time we have another chance it -- coach and most likely. And if I had -- perfect crystal ball firmly tell him to pick one place that I. I'd like to do it again and this is certainly -- -- -- to do it and especially with the people. And talking to mr. -- Last night when he says something about. It's of people here who were these people and -- go with. Home. Guns blazing here and and it's in those teams this fast they can and -- to trying to change a culture is I think that's one of -- On the most important things from. With a winning team you know I'm not incumbency we have to do this -- you have after that cassettes we get paid to do and I think we. We discuss the issues we have to repeat to do that when I'm looking forward to to meet some of the players it is. To assistant coach we'll stay on and on boards will have a chance to chance to meet with them but. I'd be remiss if I didn't. I get emotional sometimes and I do wanna get too emotional. When you go through some very difficult times it's it's the people that. That are close to that and maintain that in -- My my answer my equipment but I'm sitting right there. -- -- -- Listen Jordan please please answer experience is lessons to think turned over to coach against him for a -- -- I think me and my son Brandon are are with us here today so. You know there are sometimes and I thought maybe -- wouldn't get that it's a chance handle two of -- when senator tips in the UN itself to these very special -- I'm just. -- thankful for this opportunity and and as -- it does have always done. And we give it everything I have. And I just really wanted to -- -- -- -- -- for forgiveness great opportunity and we'll try not to to look to see the people of buffalo -- -- we'll we'll we'll compete in the and who make really exciting and make it to the someplace that people wanna come and enjoy hockey into it thanks. And done we will open it up. We will open it up to questions as -- center of the two microphones. We do you have a lot of questions. You know gone forward so which -- inching her palms are palm in the wondering. As we go forward here as you look for GM -- the one that will be making player moves that type of thing until my number one. And number two. That had not want the job full timer why intranet coach. Paula. I -- I'll be working closely with Kevin DeVine. And -- and are obviously pro scouting staff because there is a vision -- we have in mind. We are going down this road so. They will start today when you're close with them until the next general managers. In place. Question did the second question was about. Well because I think in the chain of command. It's gonna take a team from top to bottom we don't have all the pieces in place. But an -- to come in right now and just. Restore what we believe this is to change the culture -- and get everybody on board all work in my hand on the topside you know I'll be putting the pieces together. And my goal is to get the best that's been out there that helped build the next college championship caliber team. And I need somebody in the locker room for the players right now there's not a better men sitting next to -- you know that's that's why I chose today. As far as that's concerned in the next general manager comes and he's obviously. And making the decision going forward. -- question for Terry. Everyone understands this decision today is rooted in the performance of the team on the ice even regardless of stated goal of rebuilding. In your mind is the owner what was the tipping point. To do this now. And secondly that is. Essentially in the face of all the team's struggles in the past why weren't -- having this press conference today. The one thing that. I've always done my whole life is. When I worked with the people. IE. Dedicate. All my efforts to. Trying to make them successful. I am a people person you can ask anybody who's worked with me in the past and in my prior businesses and it's going to continue with. -- this organization. I have I give people. A chance I work with them and no one on this planet is perfect. We should all recognize that. And one of the things I said to pat. When he came in I don't know we decided to do this was patents and one thing you. One thing that you should find comforting is that. He can see the way. I hang in with my people. And -- that's got to be comforting to you believe in other words your first mistake you're not out. -- seconds you know. Let's let's get an attitude. And build something and as long as this as someone who doesn't think. There's the emperor. We can all work together and you know you know. One thing that I think depression know is. There's not a sports organization. That exists in North America that is run by one person. It's every one together contributing. So. You know there was a lot of discontent with Darcy -- gear. Darcy didn't do what he did all by himself played in command every morning say here's what we're gonna do today. And that's it there was discussion. There was input from many people. Prior owners myself so. So. Why now. I guess the time I just decided and that's the only answer I can give him but it you know we work together and sometimes. You get to the point where those changes needed. To receiving -- had a heck of Iran. With the Buffalo Sabres and I don't know. I think the second ranking. GM in terms of -- My right I don't know but. You know it's it's not like he was. A failure. Hit 6816. Years. -- -- --

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