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Sabres assistant coach possibilities from Rolston's past include Housley, Blashill

By John Vogl

One week ago, Sabres coach Ron Rolston figured it would take about a week to assemble a staff of assistants. He fired Lindy Ruff-holdovers James Patrick and Kevyn Adams on Thursday. Chadd Cassidy, who has been Rolston's assistant since 2006, is expected to get one of the jobs.

Here's a look at Rolston's other assistants from his time at USA Hockey.

World Junior Championship Teams

2007: Phil Housley, Nate Leaman.

Housley would have immediate name appeal for Buffalonians, who watched him play for the Sabres. Housley is an assistant coach for the U.S. team at the world championships, so any announcement wouldn't come until that was over.

Leaman is in his second season as the head coach of Providence College.

2009: Leaman, P.K. O'Handley, Jeff Blashill.

Blashill is in his first season as head coach of the Grand Rapids Griffins, the AHL team for Detroit. Blashill spent one season on the Red Wings' bench before heading to Grand Rapids. The Griffins are in the playoffs, so like Housley any announcement wouldn't come until the season was complete.

O'Handley is in his 11th year as coach of Waterloo of the United States Hockey League.

U.S. Under-18 Team

2005: John Lilley, Leaman.

Lilley is an amateur scout for the Toronto Maple Leafs.

2007: Cassidy, Patrick Foley.

Foley is in his second season as an assistant at Northeastern University.

2009: Cassidy, Tim Taylor, Joe Exeter.

Taylor, a longtime coach at Yale, died last month. Exeter is in his second season as an assistant at Ohio State.

2011: Cassidy, Taylor, Exeter, Matt Curley.

Curley is the associate head coach for the Indiana Ice of the USHL.

The only two who seem ready for the NHL are Housley and Blashill.


Ron Rolston
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John Vogl

John Vogl

John Vogl has been covering the Sabres since 2002-03, an era that has included playoff runs, last-place finishes and three ownership changes. The award-winning writer is the Buffalo chapter chairman for the Professional Hockey Writers’ Association.

@BuffNewsVogl |

About Sabres Edge

Mike Harrington

Mike Harrington

Mike Harrington, a Canisius College graduate who began his career as a News reporter in 1987, has been covering the Buffalo Sabres since 2007. He is a member of the Professional Hockey Writers' Association and can vouch that exposed flesh freezes instantly when walking in downtown Winnipeg in January.

@BNHarrington |

Amy Moritz

Amy Moritz

Amy Moritz, a native of Lockport, has a bachelor’s degree in journalism/mass communication from St. Bonaventure University and a master’s degree in humanities from the University at Buffalo. An endurance athlete, she has completed several triathlons, half marathons and marathons.

@amymoritz |