'The truth is that the Sabres had a world-class star tending goal. He saved their derrieres night after night and put cash receipts in the club treasury via a baker's dozen playoff series.'
Archives for June 2002
'DuRoss was approached by an investment bank firm and a group of wealthy individuals and was asked to head the group to purchase the Sabres and keep them in Buffalo. The P-Bruins owner has a lot of experience running sports franchises. He also owns the pro soccer league Rochester Rhinos and Major League Lacrosse's Rochester Rattlers. He began the process two weeks ago and is very serious about acquiring the Sabres. "It's partly done with community interest at heart," said DuRoss. "No one wants to see their professional sports team leave their town."'
'While at least two other potential ownership groups have been identified – one that wants a team for Portland, Ore., and the other a Utica-based group that would keep the team in Buffalo – several sources said Hamister's group remains the team's most likely suitor.'
'Sherry Bassin, the managing partner and general manager of the Erie Otters, has a reputation in NHL circles for successfully building hockey teams. That reputation is so solid, in fact, that Bassin's name has been associated with one of three groups of investors interested in buying the beleaguered Buffalo Sabres.'
'Hamister, CEO and founder of the Buffalo-based National Health Care Affiliates and owner of the Arena Football League Buffalo Destroyers, is not considered to have the financial resources to pursue the team on his own. As a result, he has also met with a series of unidentified investors that are expected to join him in buying the team.'
'" I don't want to prove it to anybody but myself that each year I can play a little better than the year before. I always have the motivation to become better."'
'It is uncertain whether Gratton, Varada or Warrener will take the arbitrtation route. None is coming off a particularly outstanding statistical campaign, although Warrener did score a career-high five goals.'
'The Sabres have until Sunday to re-sign three veterans — enforcer Rob Ray and defenseman James Patrick and Richard Smehlik — eligible to become unrestricted free agents. Smehlik has already suggested that he will pursue free agency, and considers it unlikely that he will re-sign with the Sabres.'
'Buffalo extended qualifying offers to right wings Jeremy Adduono, Maxim Afinogenov and Vaclav Varada; centers Tim Connolly, Chris Gratton and Francois Methot; goaltenders Martin Biron and Mika Noronen; and defensemen Brian Campbell and Rhett Warrener.'
'Ch2 has learned from NHL sources that Allen, who also owns the NFL's Seattle Seahawks and NBA's Portland Trailblazers, has presented a "substantial" cash offer to purchase the troubled Sabres franchise, with the intention of moving the franchise to Portland Oregon after the 2002-2003 season.'
'"I believe we can improve on revenues. The idea is to do this with as little debt as possible."'
'"We have met with and are in regular contact with the NHL and we are committed in doing everything we can to keep the Sabres in Buffalo," said Michael Marr, spokesman for the Empire State Development Corporation. "To that end, this week we met with a potential buyer committed to keeping the team in Buffalo." Marr said the meeting took place in Buffalo earlier this week, but would not disclose the topics discussed during the meeting or the identity of the prospective buyer.'
'DuRoss wouldn't reveal who has approached him other than to say he's been contacted by an investment banking firm and other people with ties to western New York.'
\’\”I believe you can turn a profit operating the Buffalo Sabres at HSBC Arena. Buffalo is a strong hockey market.\”\’
'Now that Hasek has proved to be a man of his word by retiring from the NHL after helping Detroit win the 2002 Stanley Cup, I am more convinced than ever that his request to be traded by the Sabres to a championship contender was reasonable and appropriate.'