The Buffalo Sabres are reportedly set to hire Hall of Famer Bryan Trottier to their coaching staff as an assistant to head coach Ted Nolan. This would be the first hire to the staff after Nolan cleaned house following the worst season in Buffalo Sabres history. The news came via Bucky Gleason at The Buffalo News.
Sources: Sabres have reached an agreement with Hall of Famer Bryan Trottier to serve as assistant coach under Ted Nolan.
— Bucky Gleason (@TBNbucky) July 29, 2014
Trottier brings with him a wee bit of experience, having played on six Stanley-Cup winning squads. He was one of the foremost players on the New York Islanders dynasty that won four straight Stanley Cups from 1980-1983. He won the Conn Smythe trophy as the playoff MVP in 1980. While Mike Bossy was often heralded as the best player on those teams, it was Trottier who served the two-way top center role so vital to any championship hockey team (think Jonathan Toews and Anze Kopitar today).
Now, the Sabres hope that in Trottier, they’ll have someone who can mentor the plethora of young forwards trying to crack a pro roster that should be wide open for competition. Unless the Sabres call up draftee Sam Reinhart, they will have no true centers, and having a former center behind the bench should be a huge boon for players like Cody Hodgson and Tyler Ennis who, while possessing tons of offensive talent, must work heavily on their two-way game if they ever want to play center for a team that isn’t the worst in the league.
Ted Nolan has yet to sign any other assistants, but for now it appears that the team has hit a home run in its first assistant coaching hire of the offseason. Their next objective? Find someone who can mentor the equally raw defensive core.
Tags: Buffalo Sabres