Craig Patrick named special assistant and adviser to the hockey department
Buffalo Sabres president of hockey operations Pat LaFontaine today announced the team has hired Tim Murray, a 20-year veteran of NHL front offices, to serve as the club's general manager. The team also announced Craig Patrick, the longtime general manager of the Pittsburgh Penguins and a member of the Hockey Hall of Fame, has been hired to serve as a special assistant and adviser to the hockey department.
Murray comes to the Sabres after serving as the assistant general manager for the Ottawa Senators, a post he held for seven years. Part of his duties as assistant general manager included serving as general manager of Ottawa's American Hockey League affiliate, the 2011 Calder-Cup champion Binghamton Senators.
Prior to being named the Senators' assistant general manager in 2007, Murray spent three years (2002-05) as the director of player personnel for the Anaheim Ducks, where he was responsible for overseeing the amateur draft and college free agents. He also served as the assistant director of player personnel for the New York Rangers for two years (2005-07), where he evaluated potential free agents and also worked as an amateur scout. Murray began his NHL career in 1993-94, when he was hired as an amateur scout for the Detroit Red Wings. He then moved on to the Florida Panthers, where he served as a scout from 1994-2002.
Patrick, whose career as a hockey executive spans more than three decades, comes to the Sabres after serving as a senior adviser in the Columbus Blue Jackets' front office since December 2011. A 2001 inductee into the Hockey Hall of Fame, Patrick has earned a reputation as one of the most respected executives in hockey, having been named the Sporting News' NHL Executive of the Year three times (1990-91, 1997-98 and 1998-99) and also the recipient of the 2000 Lester Patrick Trophy, named after his grandfather, for his many contributions to hockey in the U.S.
For 17 years (1989-2006) Patrick served as the executive vice president and general manager of the Pittsburgh Penguins, during which time he elevated the club to being one of the elite teams in the NHL. During his tenure, the Penguins won back-to-back Stanley Cup Championships (1991 and 1992), earned five division titles and made 11 trips to the playoffs. He also helped the Penguins procure some of the best players in team history, including Jaromir Jagr, Marc-Andre Fleury, Evgeni Malkin and Sidney Crosby.
Patrick's career in the NHL as a hockey executive began in 1981, when he was hired to be general manager of the New York Rangers, a post he held until 1986. He has also served as general manager of the 2002 silver-medal winning U.S. Olympic team and assistant general manager of the famed 1980 U.S. Olympic team that won a gold medal in the "Miracle on Ice."