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by Staff Writer / Buffalo Sabres
The Buffalo Sabres today announced that Sean Green is the 2011 recipient of the J. Michael Duffett Memorial Award, presented each year to the coach whose contributions to amateur hockey in Western New York “best exemplifies the knowledge, teaching, love of the game and gentle humanity of Mike.” The award will be presented to Green at Friday’s game against the New York Islanders.

The executive director and driving force behind the success of the Hasek’s Heroes program, Green becomes the 26th recipient of the Duffett Award. In addition to his work with Hasek’s Heroes, Green is head coach of the Williamsville South varsity hockey team, and has been involved with Amherst Youth Hockey for the past 20 years. While growing up in Buffalo, Green was proud to call Michael Duffett his coach for several seasons, many of which while playing alongside Duffett’s son Brian. 

Under Green’s leadership, Hasek’s Heroes has become a nationwide model for inner-city sports and educational programs since being founded by former Buffalo Sabres goaltender Dominik Hasek in 2001. This thriving youth hockey league is based out of the Riverside Arena in the City of Buffalo and gives children from low to moderate income families the opportunity to learn basic skating and hockey skills, while promoting academic excellence. Considered one of the city’s premier afterschool programs, more than 2,000 kids have participated in Hasek’s Heroes since its inception. Currently in its ninth season, the Hasek’s Heroes program teaches leadership, perseverance, loyalty and commitment, and provides each participant with the foundation for a winning future.

In 1984, the Buffalo Sabres established the J. Michael Duffett Award in his memory. Mike was a student of the game and a coach with the Buffalo Bisons and the Amherst Hockey Association. A standout player at Nichols School and Clarkson College, he was working in the Sabres hockey department under Scotty Bowman and Roger Neilson at the time of his death after a long battle with cancer.
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