The Buffalo Sabres brought in San Jose Sharks assistant coach Bob Boughner for an interview yesterday according to Pierre LeBrun of TSN. The Sabres continue to search for their next head coach after firing Dan Bylsma earlier this spring. Boughner has been with the Sharks for two seasons, and had two lengthy runs as head coach of the Windsor Spitfires of the OHL.
Before entering coaching, Boughner played 630 games in the NHL including three seasons for the Sabres. The tough defenseman put up just 72 points in his NHL career, but is considered an up-and-coming head coach that will eventually land a job somewhere around the league.
- Former Edmonton Oilers head coach Ralph Krueger had been linked to the job, though he has no intention of returning to the NHL just yet. Now chairman of a soccer team in the EPL, Krueger apparently has already turned down two different offers this year to return and is quite happy with his current situation.
- Todd Reirden has been mentioned in connection with the job, but his close ties to the outgoing Bylmsa may pose an issue. While obviously the two don’t coach exactly the same, they have worked together at several stops and would likely bring many of the same messages. As Buffalo tries to rebuild its identity, bringing someone in from the same coaching bubble may not be the ideal move.
- Clark Donatelli, the man Botterill hired to replace Mike Sullivan when he was promoted in Pittsburgh has also been linked to Buffalo. Donatelli could also be in the running for the AHL job after the Sabres fired Dan Lambert the incumbent head coach.
- Finally, Phil Housley has been connected to the vacancies in both Florida and Buffalo but teams are waiting for him to finish his Stanley Cup run with the Nashville Predators. Housley was drafted and made his debut with the Buffalo Sabres, playing eight seasons with the club at the beginning of his career. For what it’s worth (which isn’t very much), he even uses a photo of himself playing for the Sabres in his Twitter profile. It would be a solid marketing move to bring back one of the greatest defensemen ever to play for the franchise as its next head coach, but Florida will likely give ample competition for his services.