Sabres Hire Phil Housley As Head Coach

The Buffalo Sabres have named former Stillwater High School coach Phil Housley as their new head coach

After months of speculation that he might be the right guy for the job, Phil Housley was officially named the new head coach of the Buffalo Sabres on Thursday afternoon.

While coaching there, Housley accepted a number of opportunities to coach for Team USA.

He will be the first head coach to serve under new general manager Jason Botterill, replacing Dan Bylsma, who was sacked along with general manager Tim Murray in April. He has worked as an assistant coach with the Nashville Predators.

As a coach, the 53-year-old spent 2004 to 2013 at the high school level and then jumped to the global stage as he took team US to a goal medal in the 2013 IIHF World Championship. Each of his eight seasons in Buffalo rank among the top 10 single-season point totals by a Sabres defensemen.

Housley was drafted by the Sabres in the first round (6th overall) of the 1982 NHL Draft.

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Inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 2015, he becomes the seventh alumnus to serve as the Sabres head coach.

In all, Housley played 21 seasons in the National Hockey League before retiring in 2003 with the most points (1,232) and games played (1,495) of any American-born player. While Botterill never really panned out as a first-round pick by the Dallas Stars in 1994, he has found himself in a successful role with the Penguins, winning three championships in his ten years with the team. He scored 338 goals and 1,232 points across 21 seasons.

Housley began coaching in his home state in 2004, and was behind the bench at Stillwater for nine years.

Phil Housley already has visions of the "brand" of hockey he will bring to the Sabres.

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