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BUFFALO, N.Y. — For the first time in 16 years, the Buffalo Sabres will play a game without Lindy Ruff as the team's head coach.
While some fans say they've been looking for Lindy Ruff to be fired for years, others had started to move toward that opinion as things got worse this season.
But it's clear Ruff, the most successful coach in team history, will be missed.
We found this message overnight hanging on a fence right across the street from First Niagara Center.
In addition to the big thank you, there was also handwritten notes from fans thanking Ruff for his time and dedication to the team.
Sabres president Ted Black spoke about the move for the first time Thursday morning.
He said the organization is thankful for what Ruff brought to the organization, and while it was necessary for the team to move on, it was very tough to part ways with him.
"I've teared up when I fired somebody I didn't know very well. If you've never done it, it's a very hard thing to do. That said, sometimes you have to make big boy decisions when you're in the big boy chair," Black said.
Black wouldn't elaborate on how the decision was made, but said following conversations with management, Regier ultimately made it.