Why Getting Dominik Hasek Is The Next Big Move The Buffalo Sabres Need To Make

So far during this offseason, the majority of my posts have addressed the topics of the 2013 NHL Entry Draft, the free agent market, and my desire to see the Buffalo Sabres do more in terms of using trades to facilitate the rebuilding process they have initiated.

Well, there’s one acquisition I have not discussed so far this summer.

Yes, I’m advocating that the Buffalo Sabre got out and get Dominik Hasek.

No, I’m not talking about adding him to the roster!

The Buffalo Sabres are currently in the midst of rebuilding their roster, in the hopes of assembling a team that is worthy of contending for Lord Stanley’s Cup.  That’s great – but it’s not enough.  Sure, the Sabres might hit the jackpot and build a team that makes the playoffs a few years in a row, and if everything falls into place they may even make it into the Stanley Cup Finals in my lifetime.  Hell, weirder things have happened: the Buffalo Sabres could even win the Cup once while I live and breathe.

But is winning the Cup once an acceptable goal?

In order to consistently compete for the chance to hoist the greatest trophy in all of professional sports – which is the goal of teams such as the Pittsburgh Penguins, Detroit Red Wings, Chicago Blackhawks, Boston Bruins, New York Rangers, Philadelphia Flyers, etc. – an organization must do more than strike gold once.  I know you’ve heard me say this before, but the teams that spend years fighting for the Cup, stopping once in a while to reload only to claw their way back to the top in a short period of time, all hail from a culture of winning.   Organizations that create a culture of winning expect to compete for a championship every single season, and they understand that it’s not simply the players on the team who must know how to win; rather, everyone in the system, especially the people working in the front office, have to know what it takes – and more importantly, what it means - to win.

Raise your hand if you think the front office knows what it takes, and means, to win?  Dammit it, Misters Pegula and Regier, put your hands down!

It’s simple: if you were the Buffalo Sabres, you could put your hope in the “even a blind man hits the mark” philosophy and hope that your front office of people who have never won anything in the world of professional sports stumble upon a winning formula and lead your team to greatness one year.

A better choice, in my eyes, is to aggressively pursue the option of bringing in proven winners, preferably players who spent time wearing the blue and gold (or, in today’s case, the black and red), in order to lead the franchise in the winning direction.

Which is why the Buffalo Sabres should convince Dominik Hasek that he should don a suit and tie and join the Sabres’ front office.

Hasek with the Stanley Cup in 2002

Some Sabres fans resent Hasek for leaving the team in search of a Stanley Cup – get over it.  Ryan Miller wants to do the exact same thing, and you cannot blame a player for that.  Some fans will not forgive him for saying, “”I am and will be a Red Wing forever,” when he first retired in 2002.  What did you want him to say: “Even though I finally won a Stanley Cup with the Detroit Red Wings, I am and will be a Buffalo Sabre forever”?  Really?  The man had just won the Stanley Cup – he was elated.  He has since proven that he is proud to have been a member of the Sabres’ franchise.

While there are other ex-Sabres I would gladly discuss – Gilbert Perreault, for example –  I am throwing my hat in the Dominator ring for one simple reason: Hasek has won a Stanley Cup, whereas someone like Perreault has not.  That doesn’t mean I would not bring in retired Sabres who have never won a Cup; however, I would start with someone who has, and then add other legends to the front office.  Hey – the goal of the franchise is to win a Stanley Cup, right?   Gotta give the nod to the Hall of Famer who lifted the Cup.

Hasek holds over 539 Sabres’ franchise records – look it up! –  and has played recently enough that this generation of players would still be awe of him.  He has founded Hasek’s Heroes, which aims to help children from middle- and low-income families achieve their athletic and educational goals.   He’s a Hall of Fame lock, a well-educated man, and a potential overseas ambassador for the franchise.  Why would the Buffalo Sabres NOT want to bring a retired player with Hasek’s pedigree into the fold?

I am fully on board with the Sabres’ rebuilding plan, and even advocate trading Thomas Vanek and Ryan Miller to speed up the process, as most of you already know.  Rebuilding is the right course of action for the Buffalo Sabres – but if the front office thinks that the only rebuilding that needs to be done is on the ice, then this franchise will never become an elite professional sports organization.  The Sabres desperately need to bring some proven winners into the front office, beginning with Dominik Hasek.  Only then can we hope to see a culture of winning alive and well in the 716.

Who else would you want to see the Buffalo Sabres bring into the front office, and why?  Leave your comments below, or fire them @theamazingMrS!  And don’t forget to email your question or ideas to [email protected]!  

Topics: Buffalo Sabres, Dominik Hasek

Want more from Sabre Noise?  
Subscribe to FanSided Daily for your morning fix. Enter your email and stay in the know.
  • Kevin

    I agree and great read Rich. My worry, is he personable enough?

    • http://SabreNoise.com/ Richard Spalding

      I’m hoping age has mellowed him a bit! :D

  • chas territo

    I couldn’t finish reading this! Too much a joke or a dumb fantasy put to print!! Hasek the basket case and the Sabres revisit? Are you daft?

    • http://SabreNoise.com/ Richard Spalding

      Angry much? :D It’s just a blog; read or not, but please keep the rudeness out of the comments. The point was to discuss which legendary players the Sabres should bring in to help the franchise win. A lot of athletes are headcases when they play – you totally missed the point.

      • chas territo

        Angry? Hardly. You didn’t like my reply? Set for u. It was not one bit angry. Where u read anger is ur sense of insecurity about what u perceive as criticism! It was a reply to what I SAW as a joke or a fantasy. Dude, if ur gonna write accept when a reader like me disagrees with ur post. Showing what u replied to me is, in my little mind a bit reactionary.

        • http://SabreNoise.com/ Richard Spalding

          Not at all. When you refer to anything here as dumb, or ask people if they are daft, you are responding rudely, You can disagree with me all you want – plenty of people do! I accept all opinions – but these comments are for intelligent debate, not slinging around words that are rude. I want people who write for this blog, and who visit these comments, to be able to share their opinions without having them be labelled as dumb, daft, or whatever insult readers want to throw out, That’s all I ask – disagree, but refrain from insults, It’s not an issue of insecurity – it’s creating a fun, friendly environment.

          • Jes

            Agree with Richard on this one; guy you are being pretty rude with your comments. Chas could argue his point in a more civil manner but that would require some intelligence. Just don’t pay any attention to people like that Rich.

            Honestly I’d be the first one with my hand up to bring Hasek back to the organization. Him and Lafontaine would be great additions to the front office.

          • http://SabreNoise.com/ Richard Spalding

            Pat LaFontaine is another one I could easily write about. Good call, Jes. As for the comments, I just want this site to be the sort of place people like visiting. I enjoy reading the comments and responding to regulars such as yourself – keep sharing your thoughts!!!

          • Kevin

            He is right about one thing, it takes a basket case to know one and if that’s true – which I personally don’t believe – would the Sabres bite off more than they could chew?

          • http://SabreNoise.com/ Richard Spalding

            Ha ha! I don’t profess to know Hasek personally, so when it comes to bringing him into the front office, they would have to monitor him for PR reasons. The same could be said for any ex player, though. Anyway, he’s 48; you have to think he could handle being a professional, especially now that he’s not on the ice competing. We hope!

  • chas territo

    Rude? Again, u r the clown, I was not rude! I will reply how I do, when I do. If u took my direct, no holds barred, up front, strong response as rude, look in the damn mirror. U were rude by calling me angry then, but now I am! U are not in this world long enough or garnered enough respect from me with ur misinterpretations! Do not reply to this because I will not give u my respect b/c u do not deserve it. I will reply again in the future with no promise of liking what u write, but b/c I find it worthy, maybe even a good piece of writing. Hv a gd day, till next time, be good, be real and be thick skinned…… CHAS

    • http://SabreNoise.com/ Richard Spalding
    • Matt Nolan

      You look like a dumbass and you sound like and ignant one, yes ignant. I I personally enjoyed reading the article and, your mother obviously didn’t teach you well enough to garner respect stop preaching and have some respect if you don’t like someone’s work be somewhat constructive in your criticism bring something to the table other than negativity.

      • chas territo

        Bad jokes aside, here’s a truth for you Matt, you r an ase howl! Tit for tat, and that’s that! Go impregnable yourself with a penile extrusion, far got!

        • Matt Nolan

          Hahahah good one k-fed did u get that one from malibus most wanted

          • http://SabreNoise.com/ Richard Spalding

            Matt, don’t get him going. I would prefer not to have to ban anyone from the site, much less two people. Glad you enjoyed the read!

          • Matt Nolan

            For sure I enjoy your articles I try to look everyday and if I was you chester cheeto wudda been gone but hope all is well rich can’t wait for the season

          • http://SabreNoise.com/ Richard Spalding

            Thanks for coming back, Matt! I try to keep things interesting and entertaining! I also am excited for the season – I’ll do my best, and make sure you follow me on the nights I am Tweeting live from First Niagara!

          • Matt Nolan

            I’m still old fashioned haven’t gotten to twitter yet but I like the articles especially during these summer days where the thoughts of this season are all weare left with at least football is getting started it means hockey is not too far off

          • http://SabreNoise.com/ Richard Spalding

            I used to resist using Twitter, but during the games doing the back-and-forth with the fans is the best part! I’ve got some ideas cooking for the rest of the off-season, to keep everyone focused on hockey. :D

  • Thomas Eric

    I remember back when I was a kid his son had a hockey game at our local rink in Rochester and he sat secluded on the bench and snuck out the back door and walked in through the back couldn’t even walk through the front like a normal guy

    • http://SabreNoise.com/ Richard Spalding

      Thanks for sharing, Thomas! I’d love to give Hasek a chance to have a positive impact on the Sabres’ players.

  • qwicwted

    Rich – I like this idea. Hasek is a character and may have had his moments, but he has set almost all the records for a Sabres Goaltender, has a Gold medal and his name is on the Stanley Cup. I think he could help out with our young goalies. I also think bringing in Lafontaine would also be a good idea – perhaps bring in some of our retired players to work with our youth during preseason and at various times throughout the year wouldn’t be a bad idea. Buffalo has quite a number of former players that live in the area – why not invite some in as mentors.

    • http://SabreNoise.com/ Richard Spalding

      Exactly – surround the team with experience. Don’t know why it has not been fully implemented yet!

      • qwicwted

        I thought that was Pegula’s vision when he bought the team – bringing in the French Connection and others to get more involved with the team. Having the vets available to mentor our youth would speak volumes both to the fan base and our team.

  • Matt Nolan

    I’d like to see mike peca involved in the coaching soon!

    • http://SabreNoise.com/ Richard Spalding

      Yep, I would like to see Peca involved, too!

      • qwicwted

        Peca is involved with the Sabres – managing the Jr. Buffalo Sabres which is owned by the Sabres. While he does that, I would like to see him work with our youngsters as a “visiting” coach. I think it would be a good teaching tool if the Sabres set up a “visiting coach” type of program and invite various vets in.

  • Kevin

    I would like someone to come in teach our centers how to win faceoffs. :)

    • http://SabreNoise.com/ Richard Spalding

      Dare to dream, Kevin!

  • [email protected]

    I like the idea, but I think that this season would be too soon into the rebuilding phase to bring in Sabres vets. I only say that because a lot of Sabres fans (me included) get impatient and would expect to see immediate results having our younger guys being mentored by these amazing players. Perhaps, at first, a behind the scenes, less publicized role would make more sense.

    • http://SabreNoise.com/ Richard Spalding

      Interesting! Hey – however the Sabres would want to approach it, the key is that they get some winners into the system, right?

      • [email protected]

        I am glad you thought it was an interesting comment! If you really think about it though, this happens a lot in sports. Team brings in a highly regarded player, whether they are playing, coaching, or mentoring, and fans expect immediate results when sometimes that just is not possible. In the end, you are right. We just need to get some winners into the system.

        • http://SabreNoise.com/ Richard Spalding

          I agree, and had not really thought of that. Clearly, the Sabres would have to temper people’s expectations, but that should not dissuade the organization from bringing these legends into the system!

  • Pingback: Around The Kingdom: Daily Links 7/30/13 - Rink Royalty - A Los Angeles Kings Fan Site - News, Blogs, Opinion and More

TEAMFeed More Sabres news from the Fansided Network

Hot on the Web From golf.com