The Instigator Podcast 5.45 – Botterill’s Gameplan on the Season Five Finale

Chris and Tyler wrap up season five by laying out what we see as early moves for new Sabres general manager Jason Botterill. In addition to running down the pros and cons of Rick Tocchet and Phil Housley, we hit on early roster moves and what the plan of attack on the blueline should be.

The Instigator Podcast 5.44 – Sabres and Botterill on the Brink

Numerous reports are pointing to Jason Botterill becoming the next general manager so Chris and Tyler jumped the gun a bit and broke down what his potential hiring means for the Sabres. We discuss his track record with the Penguins and what makes him an encouraging prospect as Buffalo’s GM. We close with discussion over what the Sabres should do with the 8th pick in this year’s draft. #tradethepick

The Instigator Podcast 5.43 – Let’s Stop Talking About the Leafs…By Talking About the Leafs

Chris and Tyler have grown tired of having to compare the Sabres to the Leafs. So we’ve decided it’s time to move on and find something more productive to discuss. But before we do we felt it necessary to air our grievances over the talking point that the “Sabres are behind the Leafs”. Along the way we touch on Buffalo’s GM search and additional news and notes from around Sabres Nation.

The Instigator Podcast 5.42 – Decompressing the Firings of Bylsma and Murray

In the wake of Dan Bylsma and Tim Murray’s firings, Chris and Tyler discuss what seems to be a knee jerk reaction by Terry and Kim Pegula and what the decision means for both the short and long term future of the team. We spend plenty of time talking about the terrible things Russ Brandon does and even offer some thoughts on who the Sabres should choose to replace their head coach and general manager.

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Pegulas Chart an Unclear Path With Today’s Firings

Maybe we should have seen the writing on the wall when Tim Murray was given an extension in the fall. If there’s one harbinger for unemployment in the Pegula sports empire it seems as if contract extensions are it.

The Pegulas have given out quite a few golden parachutes in recent years and you don’t need to look far on Twitter to find a list of all the coaches and GMs still on their payroll. You can now add Tim Murray and Dan Bylsma to that list after both were relived for their duties today.

The decision comes in the wake of a disappointing season where rumors of turmoil in the locker room and poor performance on the ice fueled fan frustration in another year without playoffs. Jack Eichel’s ankle injury on the eve of the new season cast an early shadow on the year, but it was Buffalo’s poor performance coming out of the bye week – when they were sniffing a playoff position – that seemed to truly doom the season.

Losses to Arizona and Colorado set off one of the worst stretches of the year for the Sabres and they quickly went from playoff contender to lottery hopeful due to their post-bye week collapse.  Questions over Bylsma’s effectiveness followed the team for most of the year, but they were particularly prevalent late in the year as complaints about the system and the team’s execution continued to mount. Continue reading

The Instigator Podcast 5.41 – Analyzing Bylsma’s Future in Buffalo

A big topic of conversation during Tim Murray’s final press conference centered around Dan Bylsma’s effectiveness as Buffalo’s head coach and what appears to be a rapidly closing window on his tenure. Prior to jumping into the outlook on Bylsma, Chris and Tyler offer up their playoff picks, some of which look a bit iffy after just a day and a half of action.

Something, Something Soft Sabres – An FJM Story

Jerry Sullivan put his hockey writing shoes on this week to pen a column on the failings of the Buffalo Sabres. I always look forward to his Sabres coverage because it’s impressive that someone who gets to one game per season has such a solid grasp on the pulse of the franchise.

Buffalo’s struggles this season are well documented as Tim Murray’s moves – or lack thereof – on the blueline were likely the primary reason for Buffalo’s failed season. But using the phrasing of soft sounds a bit off to me. I mean, have you watched how the league has evolved away from heavy, grinding teams in recent years? Considering the title of the column was already well off base, the content couldn’t be much better. So I thought I’d fire up the FJM engines and get to work. My additions to Jerome’s writing will be in bold. Continue reading