Month to go, and Pirates taking shape (Portland Press Herald)
‘“I want to have a good camp and try to get better every day,” Leggio said. “I hope to push for playing time and gets some wins and help the team move forward.”’
‘The bulk of those tickets — 275 — will go to the Dundas Minor Hockey Association and 18 will be given to the McMaster Children’s Hospital. Forth says the remaining 60 per cent — 588 tickets — will be awarded to residents of Dundas and Hamilton. They have further divided that into 80 per cent for Dundas residents and 20 per cent for residents in old Hamilton, Flamborough, Ancaster, Glanbrook and Stoney Creek.’
“I certainly feel closer (to the NHL) than when I was in Finland,” Leggio said. “Just to get a chance to play in the American league with this team … you’re surrounded by guys that are working toward the NHL. I think it’s going to be a great environment to keep moving forward.”
If he goes back to Portland for a sixth AHL season, Mancari, 6-foot-4 and 225 pounds, will instantly become the Pirates’ top player and one of the league’s elite scorers. He had 28 goals and 73 points in 74 games last year. He has 119 goals and 296 points in 362 AHL contests.
In the late 1980s and early 1990s, as winger Kevin Dineen terrorized the Sabres about eight times a season, it was hard to imagine the Hartford Whalers’ gritty sniper ever being admired in Buffalo.
‘"I am very excited to be back as part of the Buffalo Sabres organization," Dineen said. "My family and I are thrilled to return to Portland for a sixth season as we continue our effort of reaching our goal to win a Calder Cup championship for the great fans of Portland."’
‘"You go through a long and extremely drawn-out interview process, and I was very comfortable with the way things went," Dineen said Thursday night by phone from his family vacation retreat in Lake George, N.Y. "At the end of the day, when things don’t fall in place, there’s disappointment."’
‘“We are delighted to have Kevin and Eric returning to coach the Portland Pirates,” said Sabres General Manager Darcy Regier. “They have done an excellent job in respect to our young players and their development within the organization. As we continue to grow our young prospects, we are confident their success in the National Hockey League can be attributed to their time spent with such quality individuals that we have in place in Portland.”’
‘The Sabres announced a party of their own Wednesday. They will open their 40th anniversary season Sept. 18 with "Puck Drop 2010," a daylong event at HSBC Arena that will feature the first day of training camp, the unveiling of the team’s commemorative third jersey and the opening day of individual ticket sales for the season’s final 31 home games.’
‘He has collected two goals and three helpers in 16 games over portions of the last three seasons for Buffalo.’
‘Mancari was a restricted free agent who spent most of last season playing for Portland of the American Hockey League. The 2004 seventh-round draft pick led the Pirates with 74 points (28 goals, 46 assists) in 74 games to finish eighth in AHL scoring.’
‘Mancari (7/11/1985, 6’4”, 225 lbs.) has led Buffalo’s AHL affiliate in scoring for each of the past three seasons, including 74 points (28+46) in 74 games for the Portland Pirates in 2009-10.’
‘Leggio, a goaltender, will presumably back up Jhonas Enroth with the Portland Pirates in the American Hockey League.’
Leggio spent last season in Finland, where he backstopped TPS to the SM-liiga championship, posting a 1.57 goals-against average and .952 save percentage in seven postseason tilts. He had a 2.93 goals-against average and a .900 save percentage in 30 regular-season games.