Sabres Owner Terry Pegula spoke with Sabres Hockey Hotline to answer questions on the state of the hockey team. He backed GM Darcy Regier, and spoke of the close relationship the two have.
Terry Pegula and Darcy Regier speak quite often. Pegula joked that he speaks with Regier more than he speaks with his wife. He doubled down, or tripled, or quadrupled depending on how many times you've heard it, with his message that Regier did not have the same resources under previous owners.
"What has Darcy done wrong?", Pegula asked. He asked Kevin Sylvester for an answer to that question and then elaborated on what Regier may have faced under previous ownership. "Maybe somebody was holding the painter's hand while he was doing the painting."
Pegula has consistently maintained that his financial commitment to the organization is essentially limitless.
"I can tell you that every free agent, we have been heavily involved with them. They make the decision. I think last year's market [presumably Parise and Suter?] was a pretty good example of that. Why didn't we get this guy? Guess what...he's got a brain in his head and he makes the decision based on where he wants to go."
Players obviously have a say in where they play once they come to the end of a contract. With that in mind, Kevin Sylvester asked about both Ryan Miller and Thomas Vanek.
"I can tell the fans I'm concerned too. Yes we want them here. They have a say in that decision. What that decision is, no one has been re-signed yet. So, we're still working." When asked if he wanted the two players to return, Pegula answered, "Yes."
We hadn't heard from Pegula since the firing of Lindy Ruff and then hiring of Ron Rolston. The Sabres elected to bring back Rolston without a coaching search, and Pegula explained that decision.
"Ron didn't give us much choice last year. I don't think when you trade away your captain you deal him your best hand. You trade...two experienced defenseman. Then by the way, he does pretty well. He's another guy that...you're not going to outwork Ron Rolston. He's a hard worker."
In the next three years we have 11 picks in the first two rounds. We're going to have this massive influx of young players and some of our key players, the Grigorenkos, the Girgensons, the Larssons...these are all young guys. Ron's a teacher."