BUFFALO, NY-- The Buffalo SabresTuesday announced a major shakeup in team operations.
The teamcalled a 10:30am press conference at the First Niagara Center to announce that Pat LaFontaine and Ted Nolan are returning to the Sabres. Team owner Terry Pegula also announced that GM Darcy Reiger and coach Ron Rolston have been relieved of their duties.
The former Sabres forward's title will be President of Hockey Operations. Nolan was named interim head coach. Nolan, choking up as in introduced his family, said " If I had one place to return, this would be it. I don't think there are enough words in me to express how excited I am."
The changes come after the Sabres won their first home game of the season Tuesday night against the Los Angeles Kings.
When asked why he decided to fire Reiger now, Pegula said, "Why now? I just decided...you get the to point where change is needed."
The Sabres are off to a 4-15-1 start, the worst in franchise history. Buffalo edged Los Angeles 3-2 in a shootout Tuesday night to avoid tying the worst home start in NHL history.
Rolston was 19-26-6 in his brief tenure as Buffalo coach. Regier had been the Sabres general manager since 1997. Nolan was the Sabres coach from 1995-97.
LaFontaine starred for the Sabres from 1991-97 and was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 2003. He started a job as senior executive for the NHL in October.