Not to be outdone by the Vancouver Canucks, who continue to gaslight poor Roberto Luongo, the Buffalo Sabres have made a bid to recover their claim as this season's biggest horror show.
Pat LaFontaine joined the Buffalo Sabres as the President of Hockey Operations in November. Just under four months later, he has resigned from his position to re-join the NHL.
“I would like to thank Pat for all he has done for the organization,” said Buffalo Sabres owner Terry Pegula. “Pat joined us at a very difficult time and helped transition the organization down a new path. Tim Murray will continue as General Manager and Craig Patrick will continue as a Senior Hockey Advisor. As has been the case since I bought the team, we’ll continue to do whatever is needed to rebuild the organization and keep it on path towards our ultimate goal of winning the Stanley Cup.”
“Terry Pegula hired me in November and my primary objective was to lead the Sabres organization through a time of transition,” said Pat LaFontaine. “I'm proud of what we've been able to accomplish in a short period of time and want to thank Terry and Kim Pegula for the opportunity and their support during my time with the Sabres. I also want to convey my best wishes to all of the players in the Sabres organization and to wish them the best of success in the future. Most importantly, I want to convey my heartfelt appreciation to the great fans of the Sabres for the way I have been treated here as a player and as an executive.”
Man. The Sabres will part with just about anyone.
Seriously, though, what in the world is going on?
According to Renaud Lavoie, it's your classic power struggle. These new arrangements in the NHL, with a president of hockey ops and a GM sharing many responsibilities that used to be earmarked for just one guy, aren't always going to work, and this one, between LaFontaine and the GM he just hired, Tim Murray, simply didn't:
The last straw was the Ryan Miller trade. Pat Lafontaine was pushing to give Miller an extension. Tim Murray was pushing for a trade.
— Renaud Lavoie (@LavoieRenaud) March 1, 2014
In other words, the departure of Ryan Miller meant the departure of Pat LaFontaine.
But according to Darren Dreger's sources, there was no power struggle. LaFontaine just wanted to get back to New York and reclaim his old job with the league.
(In all honesty, I wouldn't want to work in Buffalo's front-office either. Not if less than half a year in their front office has LaFontaine yearning for a return to his old post.)
No doubt there's more to come on this, but in the meantime, I'd like to offer a theory of my own: LaFontaine put on one of his old Sabres jerseys, from back when he was the Sabres' captain. Foolish, that. Everybody knows that wearing the "C" right now is a one-way ticket out of Buffalo.
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