The Buffalo Sabres continue to work on their AHL affiliate, this time behind the bench. The Sabres have extended the contracts of head coach Kevin Dineen and assistant coach Eric Weinrich for the 2010-11 season. Dineen and Weinrich took the Portland Pirates to the Playoffs last season and have been coaching the team together since the 2008-09 season.
Dineen has been coaching the Pirates for the last 6 years and is the longest tenured coach in Pirates history. He won the Peri Memorial Award as best AHL coach in 2005-06. Earlier this summer he was considered for a head coaching job with the Columbus Blue Jackets. The job was eventually given to former Sabre Scott Arniel. Weinrich will be entering his 3rd full season as the Pirates assistant coach.
Dineen played 18 seasons in the NHL for Ottawa, Columbus, Hartford, Carolina and Philadelphia. Weinrich too played 18 seasons in the NHL with Boston, Chicago, Hartford, Montreal, New Jersey, Philadelphia, St. Louis and Vancouver. He recently finished his playing career with two seasons with in Portland under Dineen.
The Sabres will be glad to have them back as there has been nothing but high praise for these two coaches. Both Lindy Ruff and Darcy Regier have publicly gushed over their handling of the young prospects as well as their installation of Lindy Ruff’s System.