The Buffalo Sabres are looking for new assistant coaches and general manager Tim Murray and coach Ted Nolan are getting closer to narrowing down their list of candidates.
“We compared names – guys that have called him, guys that have called me,” Murray said on Thursday. “He’s talked to a lot of potential assistants in the last couple weeks so he’ll talk to them. He’ll tell me what he thinks of them and then we have to come to a decision together – who the right guys are. So it’s in the process.”
Murray confirmed that Joe Sacco has accepted a job within the organization as a professional scout. Sacco was relieved of his assistant coaching duties at the end of the season but was then offered this new role.
He’s already been given the team’s list of unrestricted free agent targets and has been familiarizing himself with the software that the scouts use.
“I think as an assistant coach and a head coach the last few years that he has some insight on some of those players – not every player on that list – but some players on that list,” Murray said. “He’s excited and he’s ready to go.”
Murray is responsible for the management of the Rochester Americans as well. Chadd Cassidy has been retained as head coach and – for now – his entire staff is returning as well. That, however, doesn’t mean that circumstances could change.
“Today, yes. Things happen every day, right? I met with Chadd yesterday. We had a great meeting. The staff was back today,” Murray said. “That’s not to say if Jacques Lemaire called and said he’d love to be the third assistant in Rochester that we wouldn’t hire him, right? But the staff is back as is, yes.”
Murray also said he's offered Randy Cunneyworth a new job within the organization but is waiting to hear back from him. Cunneyworth served as a special assistant and player development coach last season, with a focus on the Amerks.