'Nolan said in an earlier interview that he knew he made mistakes in his relationships with management in Buffalo but that he never intentionally tried to undermine anyone there, including Muckler. He also received support from Jean Knox, the wife of the former Sabres founder and team president and from Pat LaFontaine, a former Islanders and Sabres player who played for Nolan in Buffalo. Both are said to have lobbied for Nolan in regards the Islanders job.'
Archives for May 22, 2001
'Hockey's Thruway marriage – the longest between an NHL club and its top minor league affiliate – is at a crossroads. Their nuptials expire after this season, and while the teams aren't necessarily estranged, they've started playing the field.'
'Hasek played well in the playoffs, but not well enough to reach the third round. He's no longer the best in the world, but he's among the best in the league. He hasn't proven he can win the Cup, but almost every Cup contender needs a great goalie. He wants the Sabres to give him another crack.'
'He thought he deserved more respect. Instead, he still is waiting for his next opportunity to come. If it ever does. "I proved I can win," he said, "and that's the bottom line." Apparently, it's not enough in Nolan's case.'
‘Ted Nolan could have done that. He would have been a galvanizing presence. He would have become the face of the Islanders, a confident and smiling face. It would have been interesting to talk about his rise from a modest upbringing-he and his brother couldn’t play on the same shift when they were in youth leagues because they had to share a pair of gloves-to the NHL’s coach of the year with the Buffalo Sabres.’
'In bypassing Nolan, Milbury is likely to add to the reputation that Nolan will not be hired by any current NHL general manger. Nolan hasn't worked in the NHL since a nasty separation from Buffalo during which there was a long-simmering feud between himself and former Sabres general manager John Muckler and a feud between Nolan and star goaltender Dominik Hasek.'
After dismissing early-season critics with a rousing start, the 2000-2001 Buffalo Sabres produced one of the more memorable regular seasons in their franchise history. Here are this season's final grades in numerical order with Lindy Ruff and Darcy Regier saved for last…