BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) - For the first time since he was fired from the Buffalo Sabres, Lindy Ruff will make his return Monday night. This time as an opponent.
Ruff said Monday, “We need to win a game, we've had our share of ups and downs this year too as a team.”
Ruff was the longest tenured coach in the NHL, having coached the Sabres from 1997 until he was fired almost a year ago.
Ruff said, “It's tough to see where the team is at in the standings, but I watch how these players play and how some of the young players play and I think there's a lot of promise here.”
On a day when there is so much change within the Sabres organization, Goalie Ryan Miller sought out the familiar face, greeting lindy on the ice, during practice.
In the locker room, Drew Stafford said the veterans are working to keep hope alive.
Stafford said, “For the veteran guys that are left at least, we have to make sure just like I said starting tonight, take care of our job and go from there and hopefully have a good game.”
Tyler Myers said it'll be bizarre seeing Ruff on the other side of the arena.
“A lot stranger for him, what he’s meant to this city, the fans, what he's done for this organization. I think it's going to be strange for him to be on the other bench.”
When asked if Ruff still roots for the Sabres, he laughed, “Not tonight I can't root, you know, I can root in between games.”
Ruff said, “I root for the city, and I root for the team, I want to see them do well.”
Lindy was fired from the Sabres last season, but he has deep roots here in Buffalo. He was drafted by the Sabres in 1979 and went on to be the team’s winningest coach. Ruff’s family still lives in the area, too.
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