The Buffalo Sabres have fired general manager Jason Botterill and assistant general managers Randy Sexton and Steve Greely. The Sabres would also name senior vice president of business administration Kevyn Adams the new general manager of the team.
This decision came as a surprise to the hockey world given the fact that Sabres’ co-owner Kim Pegula publicly stated that Botterill’s job was secure just three weeks ago.
In a statement made by Kim and Terry Pegula, the two outlined their decision to move on from the current Sabres’ management team and move forward in a different direction.
This morning, we informed Jason Botterill he will no longer be the General Manager of the Sabres. This decision was made after many candid discussions with Jason during a full review of our hockey operation. We recognized we have philosophical differences regarding how best to put ourselves in a position to compete for a Stanley Cup. So, we decided to make this change.
We wish Jason and his family all the best moving forward, and we thank him for his time and energy devoted to our organization and to the City of Buffalo.
New General Manager Kevyn Adams and Head Coach Ralph Krueger already have a close working relationship and we are excited to see what they can do together as we reconfigure our hockey operations. We have the benefit of this long 2020 pause to take time to reorganize and re-energize our hockey department. We recognize the importance of this offseason with so many player decisions to be made.
We have had the pleasure of watching Kevyn build his post-playing career over the past nine years under multiple roles throughout our organizations. We are confident Kevyn and Ralph will work together to build a consistent contender. As always, we are here to provide the necessary resources.
Our fans deserve better, and we are all tasked with the burden to improve and provide them a consistent, contending team for years to come.Kim and Terry Pegula
The Sabres would go 30-31-8 this pat season. That record put them in 13th place in the Eastern Conference and just one spot short of the 24-team NHL playoff format that’s in place this season.
Sabres Nearing Historically Bad Drought
In his three seasons with the Sabres, Botterill was unable to turn the Sabres around and their now nine-year playoff drought is still alive and unfortunately well. It’s the longest active streak in the NHL and is only one season short of tying the league record. This is something the Sabres would undoubtedly like to change.
During his time with the Sabres, Botterill made some good moves and some not-so-good moves which ultimately kept the team stagnant. This stagnancy also led to players like captain Jack Eichel and defender Rasmus Ristolainen speaking out on their displeasure with the direction of the team.
It’s unclear what the future of the Sabres holds and whether or not the team will be looking to fully rebuild or continue on their trajectory.
There’s no arguing that the team has a young core filled with very talented players who can be impactful in the NHL. Unfortunately, though, the “next year is the year” claim has been made for years regarding the Sabres and it’s taken them to an almost historically bad drought.