The Sabres Report - July 27, 2015

Sabres name Brandon as president   

The Sports Xchange:

‘Sabres general manager Tim Murray will continue to oversee hockey operations and report directly to the owners.’

Sabres hire Russ Brandon as president to replace Ted Black   

Olean Times Herald:

‘Naturally, Brandon wants to market the Sabres as a regional franchise, something he has accomplished with the Bills, who hold training camp at St. John Fischer and once held a yearly game in Toronto. Having the Rochester Americans, the Sabres’ AHL affiliate, so close will help.’

Pegula's trust in Brandon continues to grow   

WGR-AM:

‘Brandon is largely credited with helping to expand the Bills fan base beyond Western New York and into Central New York and Southern Ontario through regionalization efforts. He says that will continue with the Sabres, as well. “Absolutely. Obviously everyone knows what Rochester means to the Bills, but it also means a great deal to the Sabres. And there’s a great brand in the (Sabres AHL affiliate) Rochester Americans. That is the critical, really linchpin to how we built our business over the last eighteen years and we will follow a similar format to that. Obviously there’s going to be differences as we move forward, but Rochester, Southern Ontario, Erie, our entire region is very important to us.”’

Sabres' Brandon said he is business only   

WGR-AM:

‘Doug Whaley and Rex Ryan report to the Pegulas, not Brandon. Nothing is going to change now that he’s President of the Sabres. As a matter of fact when Brandon was asked about the hockey department he said, “I couldn’t be more hands off.” He added, “That’s the focus here, the focus is business. When it comes to hockey its Tim Murray and coach as well as the football side is.”’

SABRES SIGN GUHLE TO ENTRY-LEVEL CONTRACT   

Sabres.com:

‘Guhle (6’1”, 186 lbs., 7/29/1997), the Sabres’ second-round (51st overall) selection in the 2015 NHL Draft, has spent the last two seasons playing for the Prince Albert Raiders of the Western Hockey League.’

Pegulas playing games with presidential appointees   

Delaware County Daily Times:

‘Buffalo has a longstanding love affair with its Bills, if only because that’s one of the few major league things left about the city. In baseball, as in business, the city is Triple-A rated; the NBA team left town decades ago, and the Sabres, well, they’ve been around a long time but aren’t such a popular draw of late, and always played a distant second fiddle to almighty football.’

Brandon leading Bills, Sabres business operations no surprise   

Buffalo News:

‘Brandon had became increasingly involved with the Sabres’ business operation, and last June he accompanied co-owner Kim Pegula and others within the franchise’s hierarchy to the NHL Awards ceremony in Las Vegas. Several high-end sponsors making the trip also have sponsorship deals with the Bills, evidence that the amount of business crossover between the teams eliminated the need for each to have a president.’

Russ Brandon now president of both Buffalo Bills and Buffalo Sabres   

Syracuse Post Standard:

‘While Brandon has gotten heat from fans for some football decisions, he will be relied on for his business ability in his new role. Brandon navigated the Bills through the sale of the franchise following Ralph Wilson Jr.’s death and is a big reason the franchise stayed in Western New York.’

Sabres oust Ted Black, name Russ Brandon team president   

Rochester Democrat and Chronicle:

‘His most famous quote still lives in infamy. When deflecting criticism after the unveiling of the Sabres “third jersey” in 2013, Black said, “If it doesn’t sell, it won’t really mean anything to our bottom line,” Black said on WGR radio in Buffalo. It’s a third jersey. If it’s a turdburger, I’ll have to put it on a bun and eat it.”’

Sabres shakeup: Brandon replaces Black as team president   

AP:

‘The announcement comes as a significant surprise, as Black had held the role since the Pegulas purchased the Sabres in February 2011. And the decision comes after the Pegulas added to their sports holdings in October, when they bought the Bills for an NFL-record $1.4 billion from the estate of Hall of Fame owner Ralph Wilson.’

Black is out and Brandon is in as President of the Sabres   

WGR-AM:

‘”Since we purchased the Buffalo Bills last October, we have been highly impressed with the business acumen that Russ has shown with the Bills,” said Terry & Kim Pegula. “Now is an appropriate time to give him additional responsibilities with the Sabres. Russ will work with Pegula Sports & Entertainment to create strong synergies between the Sabres and Bills. With Russ’ strong ties to the area business community and sponsorship partners, he will effectively position both organizations for future growth. We are grateful to Ted Black for all he has done for the Sabres organization and wish him much success in his future endeavors.”‘

Pegulas name Russ brandon president of Buffalo Sabres   

Sabres.com:

‘The Buffalo Sabres today announced Russ Brandon will become President and Alternate Governor of the Buffalo Sabres effective immediately while continuing as Managing Partner/President of the Buffalo Bills.’

The Sabres Report - July 25, 2015

Brian Gionta remains a happy camper   

Rochester Democrat and Chronicle:

‘”If you’re having fun, no matter what drills you’re doing, no matter what game you’re in, what situation, you’re going to be learning and enjoying it and it makes you better,” Gionta said. “If you’re dragging your head and you don’t want to be there, you’re not getting anything out of it. So to me the most important thing is having fun no matter what you’re doing, 2-on-2 on the pond or the championship game with your team, it’s got to be fun.”‘

The Sabres Report - July 24, 2015

Zenon Konopka motivated to finish career on own terms following PED suspension   

Olean Times Herald:

‘Still, Konopka’s motivated to finish on his own terms. He’s too proud to let the May 2014 suspension – he said he took DHEA (Dehydroepiandrosterone), an over-the-counter supplement he bought at CVS – essentially end his career.’

Buffalo Sabres re-sign forward D'Amigo to 1-year contract   

AP:

‘D’Amigo was acquired by Buffalo in a trade that sent forward Luke Adam to Columbus in December 2014. D’Amigo was called up from the minors in March, and had no points in nine games with the Sabres.’