TORONTO -- Reports that first surfaced late Friday night in British Columbia have been confirmed this morning with multiple outlets reporting the death of former Sabres winger and first-round draft pick Paul Cyr at the age of 48. Cyr, a diabetic, apparently died of a heart attack.
The feisty Cyr was selected ninth overall by the Sabres in the 1982 draft and was one of the team's three first-round picks that year during the reign of Scott Bowman. But the other two, Phil Housley and Dave Andreychuk, went on to have much more productive careers.
Cyr had 101 goals and 241 points in 470 NHL games for the Sabres, New York Rangers and Hartford Whalers. His best seasons in Buffalo were a 22-goal campaign in 1984-85 and a 20-goal output in 1985-86, when he put up a career-best 51 points.
Here's a good recap of his Buffalo career, which makes reference to one of the stranger offseason incidents in Sabres history: Cyr was shot in the abdomen in the Dominican Republic in the summer of 1987 but survived even though his hockey career was never really the same after that. Reports at the time were that he was an innocent bystander but the incident was the subject of rumor and innuendo for many years after. Wonder how it would have played out in today's social media world.
Cyr played only 20 games for Buffalo the next season before being traded to the Rangers in a deal that included a draft pick the Sabres eventually turned into Alexander Mogilny. CHEK Television in British Columbia has a full report on Cyr's death below.