I wasn’t going to initially write today. Take a day off, get ready for the season opener tomorrow. But then this happened;
Darcy Regier was awarded a lovely little contract extension this morning.
Note the sarcasm.
Now, I’m not saying this out of maliciousness. Seriously. I have several reasons why Darcy should have been gone a long time ago. Let’s take a look at his tenure in Buffalo shall we?
He came to Buffalo in 1997. Yes, he put teams on the ice that put Buffalo deep into the playoffs in 1998, and came 2 wins short from a Stanley Cup in 1999. That, is ancient history. Looks very successful right here, and it looks like Buffalo is going to be headed in the right direction under his leadership.
In 2000, Buffalo lost in the quarterfinals to Philly. The following season, they made it to the semifinals and were eliminated by the Penguins in 7 games. Still, there’s hope right? The 3 seasons that followed from 2001-2004, Buffalo didn’t make the playoffs. They also finished dead last in the Northeast every year.
Some may not call that grounds for firing, teams need to be rebuilt. I understand that completely. However, 3 years, last place? Even rebuilding teams make progress.
Then we enter the post 2004-2005 lockout era. Buffalo came 1 game short of making it to the Stanley Cup finals in 05-06. They even won the Presidents Trophy in 06-07.
There’s the highlights ladies and gentlemen. No more positive things from Darcy, from this point forward.
Here comes a big reason to fire Darcy. Danny Briere, and Chris Drury. Yes, we’re tired of hearing it. I’m tired of having to mention it, but as long as Regier is here, it is a stain on his tenure with the Sabres. There’s no excuse for not signing at least one of them. Then, after he fails to resign one of those 2 what does he do? He holds a press conference to explain how Buffalo was unable to sign either player. What should he have done? He should have ben trying to bring in a decent replacement into Buffalo.
The next 2 seasons, 07-08, and 08-09, Buffalo fails to get into the playoffs. However, hope gets instilled in 09-10 as Buffalo wins the Northeast, and marches into the playoffs, just to be eliminated in the first round against the Bruins. Next year, Buffalo squeaks into the playoffs at the end of the season, and get eliminated by the Flyers, failing once again to advance in the playoffs. Finally we have the debacle that was last season, and Buffalo failed to make the playoffs at all.
So, under Regier’s reign in Buffalo, we have 1 Eastern Conference Championship (1999), 1 President’s Trophy (2007), 2 Division Titles (2007, 2010) and the most important stat in my opinion;
ZERO Stanley Cups (Emphasis on the word “Zero”).
Buffalo hasn’t even been able to get out of the first round in the playoffs for the past 5 seasons. Brian Burke got fired after missing the playoffs every season he spent with the Leafs. Buffalo, while Regier has placed a team in the playoffs, continues to either not make the playoffs, or be eliminated in the first round.
On ANY other team in the NHL, he would have been gone a long time ago. I’m even hearing that there’s heat on the Penguins coach to get the Penguins playing better. They are a Cup favorite every year, they make the playoffs, and generally look pretty good. So why does Regier get so much slack?
For me, I wouldn’t mind this as much if Regier had actually put a team on the ice that would improve. Maybe, get out of the first round of the playoffs. Anyone can make the playoffs. Over half of the NHL gets into the playoffs. I feel most of Buffalo would agree, it’s not good enough to just make the playoffs anymore. You need to make the playoffs, and at least get out of the first round this year.
What would convince me that Darcy Regier should stay in Buffalo, and knows what he’s doing? Simple.
Win a Stanley Cup.
Buffalo’s Stanley Cup count prior to 1997- 0
1997- Present- “The Darcy Era” Stanley Cup Count- Still 0
What makes us think anything is going to change?
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