Sabres moving on from Babcock in coaching search

‘“I just don’t feel like making the list public,” he said. “I’ve talked to one or two before Mike. I’ve talked to guys during and since and will continue to do so.”’

Babcock simply wanted Toronto over any other

‘A source familiar with the Leafs’ negotiations said another key factor was that the Leafs front-loaded Babcock a bucket of money in the first two years of the deal, believed to be $8 million per season. The Sabres were not doing that as part of a long-term deal.’

Babcock simply played free agent game

‘Pegula made a very strong offer. I believe Babcock when he says there was no deal. He had every right to see if the Leafs could match or beat it. If the Sabres “misread” the situation, it was only in underestimating what the folks at Maple Leaf Sports & Entertainment had in mind – and Babcock’s desire to coach at the Centre of the Hockey Universe.’

Mike Babcock, Tim Murray deny coach had deal to lead Sabres

‘“I talked to lots of teams, and when you’re talking to teams, negotiation is in that process,” Babcock said this morning during his introductory news conference at the Air Canada Centre. “The hardest thing for the media to do was to figure out where I was going, because I had no idea where I was going … because it was a hard decision. We … went back and forth so many times trying to figure out what the right thing to do was.”’

Babcock denies deal done with Sabres

‘Asked by representatives of the Buffalo News and Buffalo station WGRZ-TV about whether a deal was signed and if he had lied to the Sabres, Babcock replied: “That ‘lying’ word is an interesting word. I’ve been in the public eye for a long, long time and I don’t think that goes anywhere near who I am or what I’m about.”’

Mike Babcock denies using Buffalo Sabres to secure better deal with Toronto Maple Leafs

‘”We changed our mind, no a change of mind. We went back and forth so many times what the right thing was to do. If you think (Sabres owner) Terry Pegula isn’t a star you’re mistaken or that Mike Babcock and (Buffalo general manager) Tim Murray didn’t have a great relationship, that’s wrong too. “In the end I wanted to coach the Toronto Maple Leafs and my family, this was the best fit for my family. You put those together, that’s what happened.”‘

Sabres’ Tim Murray discusses Babcock

‘As far as the team moving forward, Bulldog wondered if Murray had a profile he’s looking for in his next head coach. He said, “No, I’m open minded about coaches, how does a guy like Mike Babcock get his start unless you are open minded. I guess there’s a possibility that I could interview a couple of guys for Rochester and be really impressed and maybe consider them for here, who knows. You could be blown away by a couple of guys, how prepared they are, the plan they have. These coaches are very smart, they’re very aware of analytics, they’re very aware of a lot of things, they come in and try to wow you.”’

Babcock falls to the Leafs

‘The Sabres never entered a bidding war with the Leafs, a source with knowledge of the negotiations said. They were confident of their offer and waited for Babcock’s answer. They got it at 11:35 a.m., according to ESPN. It was not the answer they expected, leading to speculation that Babcock merely turned Buffalo’s offer into a more preferred one with Toronto.’

Sabres did all they could to bring Babcock to Buffalo

‘This is not a massive defeat for the Sabres at all. They went head-long into a big-money derby and, by any measure, did all they could to get Babcock. You offer to make someone the highest-paid coach in NHL history and he doesn’t come, that’s on him. You did all you could.’

Losing Babcock to Toronto definitely hurts

‘The Sabres weren’t ready to win, either, but prevailing wisdom said they were relatively close, and that Babcock could preside over a rapid rise in the standings and look good bringing along all that young talent. That and Pegula’s deep pockets seemed like an irresistible lure for the 52-year-old Babcock.’

Mike Babcock picks Leafs over Sabres, lands massive contract

‘For one of the few times since he bought the team in 2011, Sabres owner Terry Pegula didn’t get what he wanted. Pegula and his wife, Kim, whose hiring of Rex Ryan to coach the Bills has been a hit, wooed Babcock when he visited Buffalo on May 10. The Sabres, according to multiple reports, felt confident earlier this week they had landed their man and were angry Babcock picked Toronto.’

Sabres reportedly ‘livid’ over losing Babcock to Leafs

‘Another report out of the Queen City said the Sabres were poised to have a press conference as early as Monday to introduce Babcock, with owner Terry Pegula’s money just too enticing to ignore.’

AP source: Buffalo Sabres out of running for Mike Babcock

‘Potential candidates include former NHL coaches Dan Bylsma and Paul MacLean, and minor-league coach Luke Richardson.’

Sabres’ feel burned by Babcock

‘The Sabres now feel played as it seems like Babcock took the offer to Toronto last night or this morning. The Leafs were willing to let him make player personnel decisions while the Sabres were willing to make sure he was in on the conversations. The Sabres are now really wondering if he was planning on the Leafs all along.’

Bylsma highlights list of Sabres coaching candidates

‘Amazingly, his time in Pittsburgh is still talked about as disappointing considering Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin were on the roster, but the 2014-15 Penguins’ struggles and first-round-out made it apparent that the problems went deeper than coach.’