BUFFALO, N.Y. (AP) - A month into the NHL lockout in early October, Rochester coach Ron Rolston was preparing to open the American Hockey League season eagerly anticipating the opportunity to incorporate several Buffalo Sabres players into his lineup.
Some five months later, Rolston has inherited the entire Sabres team.
Rolston will make his NHL debut as the Sabres interim head coach Thursday. That's when Buffalo plays at Toronto, a day after coach Lindy Ruff was fired amid growing criticism for the Sabres (6-10-1) sputtering start.
It was an abrupt move for a franchise that hadn't changed coaches since Ruff was hired in the summer of 1997. And the decision to fire the franchise's winningest coach (571-432-162) came after Buffalo's high-priced lineup blundered through a 2-1 home loss to Winnipeg on Tuesday, drawing boos for its lethargic play.

Top NHL Public Bets

NHL Top Stories

Thumbnail Stanley Cup Game 6 Pick The San Jose Sharks hope to force a Game 7 of the Stanley Cup Final when they host the Pittsburgh Penguins tonight...
Thumbnail Stanley Cup Final Game 5 Pick Will the Pittsburgh Penguins close out the Stanley Cup Final tonight when they host the San Jose Sharks in...
Thumbnail Stanley Cup Final Game 4 Pick Can the San Jose Sharkseven up the Stanley Cup Finalwhen they host the Pittsburgh Penguins...
Thumbnail Penguins vs. Sharks Game 3 Pick Can the San Jose Sharks get on the board in the Stanley Cup Final when they host the Pittsburgh Penguins in Game 3 at...
Thumbnail Sharks vs. Penguins Game 2 Pick The 2016 Stanley Cup Final continues tonight when the Pittsburgh Penguins host the San Jose Sharks at 8PM ET...
More inNHL Articles  

NHL Top Stories

Thumbnail Stanley Cup Game 6 Pick The San Jose Sharks hope to force a Game 7 of the Stanley Cup Final when they host the Pittsburgh Penguins tonight...
Thumbnail Stanley Cup Final Game 5 Pick Will the Pittsburgh Penguins close out the Stanley Cup Final tonight when they host the San Jose Sharks in...
Thumbnail Stanley Cup Final Game 4 Pick Can the San Jose Sharkseven up the Stanley Cup Finalwhen they host the Pittsburgh Penguins...
Thumbnail Penguins vs. Sharks Game 3 Pick Can the San Jose Sharks get on the board in the Stanley Cup Final when they host the Pittsburgh Penguins in Game 3 at...
Thumbnail Sharks vs. Penguins Game 2 Pick The 2016 Stanley Cup Final continues tonight when the Pittsburgh Penguins host the San Jose Sharks at 8PM ET...
More inNHL Articles  

NHL Team Pages