It took a little while, but now it's official: Dan Bylsma will be the next head coach of the Buffalo Sabres.
On Thursday morning, the AP reported that Bylsma and the Sabres had an agreement in principle, with only draft pick compensation for the Pittsburgh Penguins left to be determined.
The Penguins didn’t seek a draft pick when they let Ray Shero take the GM gig in New Jersey, but they wanted one if Bylsma was to leave. According to TSN's Darren Dreger, the Sabres will give up one of their 2016 third-round picks to Pittsburgh. He also added Bylsma's deal is for five years.
Buffalo doesn't own a 2015 third-round pick, so GMs Tim Murray and Jim Rutherford needed to work out which of the Sabres' four third rounders in 2016 was to change hands. Here are the details from Bob McKenzie:
PIT gets 2016 3rd rd pick from BUF as compensation. Pick was originally NYI but has condition attached to it, so PIT likely getting VAN pick
— Bob McKenzie (@TSNBobMcKenzie) May 28, 2015
After missing out on Mike Babcock, Murray zeroed in on Bylsma, who spent the last two days meeting with Sabres owners Terry and Kim Pegula. According to the AP, the Pegulas were based in Pittsburgh before they bought the team and were such big Penguins fans they had a dog name Sidney.
While Bylsma is leaving behind a team with Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin, he'll be taking over one with Evander Kane, Tyler Ennis and Jack Eichel. As TSN"s Travis Yost pointed out, not having Pittsburgh's two-headed monster around was never a problem for him while with the Penguins and should mean good things for the Sabres.
Even Rex Ryan is excited!
— Buffalo Bills (@buffalobills) May 28, 2015
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