NHL News: Sabres fire head coach, Taylor Hall survives slapshot to the face, and Nico Hischier out three weeks

Mar 16, 2021; Newark, New Jersey, USA; Buffalo Sabres left wing Taylor Hall (4) skates off of the ice with defenseman Colin Miller (33) after being hit in the face by a puck during the first period against the New Jersey Devils at Prudential Center. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports

It took a lot longer than people expected but the Buffalo Sabres have relieved head coach Ralph Krueger of his coaching duties. Don Granato is expected to take over as interim head coach and GM Kevyn Adams will address the media at 11:30 AM ET.

NHL News: Buffalo Sabres fire head coach

A 12 game losing streak was apparently too much for Adams and the Buffalo Sabres to take. It really is a wonder it took this long and after a 3-2 loss to the Devils where the Sabres at least looked engaged.

I say this because on Monday the Sabres were abysmal in a 6-0 loss to the Capitals and Ralph Krueger’s comments were bleak. “It feels like we’re in a very deep, dark place right now, and the only way we get into any light is keeping the fight in the team and sticking together,” he said. “We’re not going to get any outside help or pity. This division is ruthless, every team ready every night.”

Sabres fire head coach
Feb 27, 2021; Buffalo, New York, USA; Buffalo Sabres head coach Ralph Krueger watches from the bench during the third period against the Philadelphia Flyers at KeyBank Center. Mandatory Credit: Timothy T. Ludwig-USA TODAY Sports

Update: Don Granato has taken over as interim head coach. Dan Girardi and Matt Ellis will be the assistants.

Taylor Hall takes slapshot to the face; comes out ok

This has been a rough season for the Sabres and it looked like it was going to get a lot worse last night. Taylor Hall was crosschecked to the back and was defenseless to get out of the way of a slapshot that hit him in the face.

Thankfully Hall was able to return to finish the game. He is considered one of the top trade rentals at this deadline and a likely valuable piece for the Sabres to right the ship.

Nico Hischier out three weeks

The Devils announced that Nico Hischier will miss the next three weeks after successful surgery of a frontal sinus fracture. The 22 year-old has appeared in only five games this season and has three points.

On Monday afternoon, Hischier underwent successful surgery to repair the frontal sinus fracture he suffered on February 27. The procedure was performed by Dr. Vijay Anand and Dr. John Sherman at New York Presbyterian Hospital in New York City. Hischier is expected to return to action in approximately three weeks. He will continue to be under the care and observation of the team’s medical and training staffs throughout the recovery process.

NJ Devils