BUFFALO, N.Y.-The new head coach of the NHL's Dallas Stars was back in Buffalo Saturday night. Lindy Ruff was spotted at a fund raiser downtown for Camp Good Days.
Friday Ruff was introduced as the Stars new head coach. Ruff told Two On Your Side's Stu Boyar that "it was tough to be out of coaching. Initially the first two or three months were good. I spent a little time away from the game. Coaches have told me that once you get away from it for awhile and I did and it was good but once I jumped back into the World Championships the bug was back again."
Ruff takes over a Dallas team that has missed the playoffs for a franchise record fifth consecutive season. The Stars have a number of up and coming forwards like Jamie Benn, Loui Eriksson, Reilly Smith and Matt Fraser among others. Stu asked Ruff if that group reminded him of any group of young Sabres forwards he once coached. "I told them I thought they were kind of at the point where we came out of the lockout (in 2004) where we didn't really know what we had. We had a good group of young guys, they had some young guys that pushed pretty hard at the end of last year. I think with five games left they were in the playoff picture. So I think and they feel looking at where some of their young guys are at I feel that they're close to that situation maybe not quite as strong but you could surprise a lot of people."
Getting back behind the bench in another city is an exciting opportunity for Ruff. He told Stu "everything is new. I have a lot of great memories here. A lot of great experiences. I think you take those with you. Everything there for them will be new too because they've got a new guy coming in. Jim Nill is coming in from Detroit as the general manager with his own ideas. So if you blend that combined with the fact that I've been around a lot of good coaches, again at the Worlds, got some new ideas. I think there's different ways you can approach it."
Ruff said he has yet to hire a coaching staff in Dallas.