Daniel DiPofi, Chief Operating Officer of the Buffalo Sabres and Randall J. Latona, Owner/Partner and Chief Financial Officer of the Rochester Americans, today announced the two organizations have signed a one-year NHL/AHL affiliation agreement.
"We are very happy to continue to have an affiliation with the Rochester Americans," said DiPofi. "The city of Rochester and the Amerks organization are a very integral part of the success of the Buffalo Sabres both on the ice and in terms fan interest."
Buffalo and Rochester will enter their 28th year as affiliated partners during the 2006-07 season. This affiliation is currently the longest working relationship in professional hockey between an NHL club and its AHL affiliate. Over the last seven seasons, the Rochester Americans have been the most successful AHL team in terms of number of points earned.
"Over the past 27 years, our affiliation with the Buffalo Sabres has proven to be a successful and winning partnership," said Latona. "I am looking forward to the synergistic continuation and success of both organizations and I am happy to have had an integral part in the future of our affiliation."
Rochester will continue to be the top developmental team for the Buffalo Sabres. The affiliation agreement calls for the Buffalo Sabres to provide the Amerks organization with a minimum of 10 prospects and the entire coaching staff. The remainder of the roster will be filled by Rochester. Both the Sabres and the Amerks felt it was important for the Rochester management to have a greater involvement in determining the veteran talent on the ice. This agreement allows Rochester to have such control.
"We feel it's a great environment to continue the development of our top prospects," said Buffalo Sabres General Manager Darcy Regier. "Many of the players on our current roster have developed their skills in Rochester. The close proximity of Rochester to Buffalo allows our organization to better monitor the progress of our top prospects."
"It's gratifying to extend the longest affiliation in professional hockey. We've had a great balance of winning and developing players over those 27 years," said Rochester Americans General Manager Jody Gage. "It's also nice for our fans to see players come through here and excel at the next level."
During their affiliation with the Sabres, the Amerks have compiled a record of 1063-856-231-8 in 2,158 regular season games. Over that period, the team has captured nine regular season titles. The 2004-05 was a banner year for the organization. With a record of 51-19-4-6 (112 points), the Amerks captured the McGregor Kilpatrick Trophy (Overall Regular Season Points champion) and the Sam Pollock Trophy (North Division Champion).