Sabres GM Kevyn Adams takes responsibility after another disappointing season

General Manager Kevyn Adams takes accountability for the Buffalo Sabres' subpar performances throughout the season and commits to being better and stays confident the organization has the right mindset to bounce back from this year.

Buffalo Sabres general manager Kevyn Adams believes his team just wasn’t good enough this season and is holding himself accountable as they table the next step.

Adams spoke with the media Tuesday after firing head coach Don Granato with the Sabres missing the playoffs for an NHL-record 13th season. Assistant coach Jason Christie and video coordinator Matt Smith were also let go from the staff.

Granato, who finished his tenure in Buffalo with a 122-125-27 record, was the team’s sixth different head coach since Lindy Ruff was fired two months into the 2012-13 season.

Adams, who has been at the helm since June 2020, was blunt when he said the team wasn’t consistent and needed to be better.

“We just flat out weren’t good enough this year,” Adams said. “We underperformed and that’s not just on the coaching staff, that’s on the players too and that’s on me. … When I make decisions like this, and this was my decision, I talked to people that I’m close with and I work with and I certainly spent a lot of time talking with [owner] Terry Pegula about, but this was my decision and I felt what I needed to do and what we needed to do to as an organization to take the next step.”

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Adams said it started from day one of training camp their standards and expectations weren’t high enough and that accountability starts with himself.

“I take responsibility for this,” he said. “First and foremost, I want all of you to know that I’m up here talking about Donny and I’m talking about the coaching staff needing to be better, but I need to be better. It’s on me, I’m the leader, and I will be, but I take that seriously.

“I look at every part of this organization and feel very strongly that if there’s a trust in relationships and how you deal each other then you can challenge with each other, I do believe we have that and have the people in the room who can handle that, so that will be something we definitely dig into as we move forward here.”

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Adams now begins his search for a new head coach with experience a high requirement on the list.

“I want the next head coach to be someone that has experience and can push this group to the next level and win hockey games,” Adams said. “I have it in mind exactly what I’m looking for and that’ll be starting today. … I’m going to be moving forward as quickly as possible because I have a very clear direction in my mind of where we’re going to go but previous NHL head coaching experience, pedigree is important.”

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