Buffalo Sabres General Manager Darcy Regier announced today that the Sabres have promoted Brian McCutcheon to associate head coach, and have hired James Patrick as assistant coach. Regier also announced that Kevin Devine has been promoted to Director of Amateur Scouting.
McCutcheon enters his seventh season as a member of the Buffalo coaching staff. Prior to joining the Sabres, he enjoyed three successful seasons as head coach of the Rochester Americans of the AHL, where he led the team to back-to-back Western Conference titles. While in Rochester, he coached several current Sabres, including Maxim Afinogenov, Dmitri Kalinin and Martin Biron. McCutcheon ended his Rochester tenure with a record of 128-82-9 and saw his Amerk teams reach the playoffs each season. Before moving to the pro ranks, McCutcheon was the head coach at his alma mater, Cornell, from 1987 to 1995 and led the Big Red to a 108-105-24 record.
Patrick joins the Sabres staff for his first season as assistant coach. Following a brief stint as Buffalo's skill development coach, Patrick spent the 2005-06 season playing in Germany for the Frankfurt Lions. Patrick was a first-round selection (ninth overall) of the New York Rangers in the 1981 NHL Entry Draft. Over his 21-year career with the Rangers, Hartford Whalers, Calgary Flames and Sabres, the 43-year-old native of Winnipeg, Man., scored 639 points (149+490) in 1,280 regular season games. His best offensive seasons came as a member of the New York Rangers from 1983-94. Patrick posted seven consecutive seasons (1985-92) of 40 or more points, including a career-high of 71 (14+57) in 1991-92. The 71 points and 57 assists were career-bests for Patrick. He scored a career-high 17 goals in 1987-88. Patrick played six seasons in Buffalo after signing as an unrestricted free agent on June 7, 1998. He scored 74 points (23+51) in 345 regular season games, and added 5 points (1+4) in 38 playoff games.
Devine becomes the Director of Amateur Scouting after nine years in the organization as both a Professional and Amateur Scout. Scott Schranz was also promoted to Director of Amateur Scouting Operations. Rounding out the Sabres scouting staff for the upcoming season are: Jon Christiano (Pro), Al MacAdam (North American), Paul Merritt (USA Amateur), Iouri Khmylev (Northeast Amateur), Bo Berglund (European Amateur), Craig Benning (Western Amateur), Kim Gellert (Western Amateur), Nik Fattey (Amateur Video Scout) and Bryan Stewart (Pro Video Scout).