Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

Report: Pat LaFontaine Closing In On GM

If there is an award for the quietest GM search, Pat LaFontaine could easily take home the prize as he continues to search for the next general manager of the Buffalo Sabres. Just a couple of weeks ago there was little word on the search and LaFontaine had yet to narrow down “finalists” for the job, but today that has changed as LaFontaine reportedly has his eyes locked on his target.

“Sabres president Pat LaFontaine is inching closer to naming his replacement for Darcy Regier. Boston assistant GM Jim Benning is considered the top candidate.” ~ Bruce Garrioch

The front runner for the job is Jim Benning, currently the assistant GM with the Boston Bruins and a former scout for the Buffalo Sabres. If Benning does get the job, it will be yet another home coming as another person with Sabres ties, returns in a management role.

Benning spent 12 years as a scout for the Buffalo Sabres and helped equip the Sabres with top talent while he was with the organization. Here is our profile on Jim Benning from our GM search series.

If LaFontaine wants to land Jim Benning, he better make his move as the Calgary Flames have also been granted permission to meet with the Bruins assistant. Can LaFontaine snatch Benning away from Brian Burke?

Pat LaFontaine has been quite quiet on the GM search, stating that in 2014 (after Olympics) a new GM would be named, but he may have been forced to puruse a target because Burke is also in the hunt.

Would you be satisfied if former scout Jim Benning returned to the Buffalo Sabres?

Tags: Buffalo Sabres GM Search Jim Benning

  • Jes

    Hope to god it’s not that douche bag Devine. Benning would be great. All I can say is the hockey gods finally smiled down on us when Dudley wasn’t hired as GM.

    • Caitlin Campbell

      Devine as in our assistant GM or whatever he is right now? No it won’t be him

      • Jes

        Could happen with Devine. According to Elliott Friedman Lafontaine is close to making himself the GM. So anything is possible at this time. I sure hope it’s an actual GM and now Lafontaine. And whoever is GM I’m hoping doesn’t become a “Yes Man.”

        • JHizzle75

          Benning is a decent choice. Now just HIRE THE MAN !!! He’s got a lot of work to do…the sooner the better.

          • Jes

            Ya that’s what it looks like JHizzy. It’s time to kick this rebuild into a 2-3 year thing. We look like we have a good shot at top 5 talent next two years and with the salary that we will be clearing this year with Miller, Moulson, Tallinder and possibly Ott we are looking pretty sweet for possible UFA signings or trades that can help us. I don’t know about anyone else but I have a feeling we will see Brad Richards in a Sabres uniform next year. Simply because Girardi & Callahan > Richards.

          • JHizzle75

            I would have no problem with Richards at all, but the Sabres would need to find a sniper for him. He’s a great playmaker and would rack up points with a pure goal scorer.

  • Ludz

    I would be fine with Benning as the Next GM but, I am not crazy about yet another former member of the organization returning it just seems like they are putting to much stock in the idea that guys who have been here, are the most likely to succeed here. i like Fenton in Nashville I think he should get serious consideration.

    • Caitlin Campbell

      I agree, I could care less about people with ties to the Sabres organization returning, IMO that doesn’t beat winning. My lead guy was Jason Botteril from Pittsburgh

      • Jes

        I would’ve loved Fauta from LA. He is my top guy. Benning was third on my list after Fauta and Botterill.

  • Thomas Eric

    Caitlin didn’t know where to post this but what’s your thought on buffalo trading for Patrick Kane? I know he wants to be a sabre at some point

    • cc

      He does not want to be a sabre. He has said it numerous times that he is happy in Chicago. He used to want to play for buffalo but he has been treated so well in Chicago, that he wants to stay there. He will not be a sabre, if at all for a LONG time. Chicago is already working on a long term deal and has said he is not going anywhere.

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  • davidmuscalo

    Actually, I want Regier back – JUST KIDDING. Benning would be a good choice, but, if I had my druthers, I hire John Davidson.

  • Chris

    If not Benning I think it should be Neil Smith!