Before we get too deep into the postseason, we feel the necessity to look back on the also-rans, how they got to that sad point and what their future might hold.
Though there were incidents on ice and via the coaching staff (particularly the failure to develop a quality backup for goalie
There was a disconnect in the locker room caused by the team's suspension of veteran defenseman
Management over-reacted to a restricted free-agent offer from Edmonton to forward
Lots of teams have economic and personnel problems, but the Detroit Red Wings, who finished with the same number of points as the Sabres last season, not only repeated as the top team, but actually bettered their total from a year ago (115 from 113).
No one is expected to lose his job in Buffalo. General manager
Quinn -- who has a reputation as being arrogant and vindictive, and is not well regarded by fans and some members of the media -- handled this season's debacle well, going so far as to apologize for missing the playoffs and vowing to do better.
Feaster also determined that goalie
Meanwhile, the heat is definitely on for
And then there is speculation that
That illustrious list is a clear indication that times have changed and that under the new CBA, getting and keeping player talent is more difficult than in pre-lockout years. It's also harder on the coaches, many of whom are used to making the postseason and having some success.
"It's not enjoyable at all," Ruff said. "It's painful to watch. It's a good thing there's a few things on HBO because we'll be flipping over there sometimes."
Hitchcock made a nice gesture to former NHL head coach