Sabres’ firing of Ruff left bigger mess

It’s hard to imagine that an accomplished businessman like Mr. Pegula allowed the Sabres’ organization to mishandle the “Hail Mary” strategy in its attempt to salvage what’s left of a lost season.

Releasing Lindy Ruff from his duties as head coach was not the solution, for it left a bigger mess than it alleviated. Doesn’t the revered Sabres owner realize that the team’s deficiencies can instead be attributed to a general manager who has, for a long time, had an insatiable thirst for high-priced mediocrity?

Sure, it’s good to have a couple of gamers named Kaleta and Ott on the team, those less-talented players whom we refer to as “character guys.” But, let’s be honest: looking at the Sabres’ overall skill level, the team’s offensive talent begins and ends with the trio of Vanek-Hodgson-Pominville – who would comprise, at best, the second line on most other NHL teams. On the back end, the defense features a handful of blueliner “busts.” A Sabres team that has such limited talent on its roster is the fault of the GM, not the coach.

Mr. Pegula is too savvy to have been hoodwinked into believing that an uninspiring coaching change in midseason was the way to turn the team around. Deep down inside, he must know that the key to improving the Sabres’ chance for future success would have been for GM Darcy Regier to be shown the door.

Alan Avery

North Collins

Sabres need others to step up games

The Buffalo Sabres are a mess right now. Aside from having three or four caliber players the team looks like a disaster. Night in and night out it looks like only one or two guys are playing. Most notable is Thomas Vanek, who got off to a hot start.

The Sabres are suffering from poor secondary scoring from their other lines. Big time players like Drew Stafford and Marcus Foligno are having problems finding the back of the net. Other players are off to slow starts and need to step up soon. I hope that the coaching staff finds time for rookie Mikhail Grigorenko to play more. The kid has a ton of talent and his limited ice time won’t help his development.

I hope in time that Buffalo will be able to find ways to win games. It just seems like the efforts of Thomas Vanek and Ryan Miller are being wasted.

Jon Deveny


Sabres muffed handling of Ruff’s departure

I never envisioned Lindy Ruff’s eventual departure to be handled so coldly. An unexpected visit while packing for a road trip?

A tenure such as Lindy’s deserved an opportunity to resign. Barring that, it would have seemed proper to hold a live press conference in which the owner expressed his sincere appreciation and perhaps referenced the ongoing theme of “Sabre family.”

Peter Thering


Nix has played big role in Bills’ draft gaffes

As the NFL draft approaches there is one lingering problem with the Bills front office. I believe that Russ Brandon is in control of the decision-making process and that he has brought in a young coach with new ideas and has totally overhauled the Bills organization except for one major problem, Buddy Nix.

How can anyone feel comfortable with the guy who missed on Gronkowski in favor of Torell Troup?

This year the draft is devoid of any impact quarterback and Nix says that now he will choose a quarterback, that he will have to reach down for and hope he gets a good one. Nix is the one who signed a backup QB and released him just before opening day, signed another QB who was never active for one regular season game and had four QBs on the roster, not one who could adequately relieve Ryan Fitzpatrick if he was injured.

He drafted a kicker who took up a valuable roster spot and released him in Week Six. He signed Fitz to a rich long term contract and spent a fortune on Mario Williams and Anderson. He hired the worst coach in Bills history and he still has a job.

I can’t help but believe that the new forward thinking regime at One Bills Drive ever wanted to keep Nix. There is only one person in the organization who continually makes terrible decisions and had enough clout to keep Doug Whaley from operating his first Bills draft, that person resides in Detroit.

John W. Kowalski


Phillips brings back memories for fan

Kudos to Budd Bailey (This Birthday in Buffalo Sports History) for featuring Bubba Phillips in his article of Feb. 24. I remember Bubba Phillips well, patrolling center field for the Bisons. He could run like the wind and was my favorite player. You stirred the memory of an 11 year old sitting in the bleachers at Offermann, eating a baloney sandwich. Thanks, Budd.

Dick Mauer


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