Sabres' Black hints at possible changes among 'core' players
ans hoping for change at the top should abandon their efforts, though. For the umpteenth time, Black expressed his support for General Manager Darcy Regier and coach Lindy Ruff.
“If this was a court reporter, I’d ask to read back the record on prior answers,” Black said regarding his support for the NHL’s longest-tenured duo.
The players may not be as safe.
“Our commitment is to winning, not to any particular group of players that are labeled as a core,” Black said. “Take that for what it’s worth.”
Black, unlike others in the organization, did not pull out the injury excuse while discussing the struggles. Plain and simple, the players are not performing.
“Guys are just on pace to have career-low years in key categories such as goals,” Black said. “If you had a team that had Lemieux, Gretzky, Orr and Howe, and imported their worst statistical years, you’d probably have a team that wasn’t going to make the playoffs. There’s no slight to those great players, the fact is every player has a career-best year, and every player has a career-worst year.
“Unfortunately, we’ve got a lot of guys that are on track to have their worst year on the same team in the same year. … If you have too many guys that have below average or worse, you’re just not going to win.”