Sabres fire Nolan after 17 months

Buffalo, NY ( - The Buffalo Sabres fired head coach Ted Nolan and all of his top assistants on Sunday.

Nolan was let go just 17 months into his second stint with the franchise but after the Sabres finished with the fewest points in the NHL for a second year in a row.

Assistants Bryan Trottier, Danny Flynn and Tom Coolen also lost their jobs on the heels of a 23-51-8 season that could end up netting the Sabres the No. 1 overall draft pick.

It was a bleak season with few highs and many lows, including one that made headlines recently when Sabres fans drew criticism last month for cheering a loss to Arizona, another team in the running for the fewest number of points.

Nolan, who went 40-87-17 as Buffalo's coach over the last two seasons, said he didn't hear the cheers and couldn't complain about the fans as long as they continued to show up.

But Sabres defenseman Mike Weber, whose penalty led to Arizona's winning goal in overtime, was outspoken about his disappointment, calling the cheers "a new low."

"We don't want to be here," he said afterward. "We understand where we are. We understand what this team's doing, what the organization's doing, the place we put ourselves in, but I've never been a part of something like that where the away team comes into a home building and (our fans are) cheering for them."

Nolan, who turned 57 on Tuesday, was named the full-time coach last month for the second time by the Sabres after coaching the team for two seasons in the 1990s.

He took over as interim coach on Nov. 13, 2013, when the Sabres made wholesale changes following a 4-15-1 start.