It didn’t end very well between the two of them. There were strange accusations, and words exchanged, and when it was all said and done we lost our Dominator.
It was a tumultuous nine year career with the Buffalo Sabres, but when it’s all said and done he may go down as the greatest Sabre of all-time. He won two Hart Trophies back to back, becoming the first goaltender to do that in NHL history, as well as six Vezina Trophies in an eight year span. Including three in a row between 1997 and 1999. He almost single handedly led the Sabres to the Stanley Cup in 1999, only to lose because of the goal that never should have been.
There were tough times too, though, the quarrel with Ted Nolan (How will that play out, on the 13th?). The DUI’s, attacking sportswriter Jim Kelley, and the unceremonious demands for a trade to a team of his choosing.
Still, though he remained close to the Buffalo area, donating over a million dollars to help impoverished youth in Buffalo play hockey through Hasek’s Heroes. However, it’s always seemed that the relationship has always been very icy, especially with former ownership. When the team was sold to Terry Pegula, it seems like that all changed. He has invited former Sabres back on several occasions, even paying for some players to return during an alumni weekend right after he purchased the team.
Dom, was back, inducted to the Buffalo Sabres Hall of Fame this past March, and then received the ultimate honor of being selected for induction this year in the NHL Hall of Fame.
Now his number 39 will be retired for good on January 13, 2015. It is a fitting end for a player that many of us know to be one of the best we’ve ever seen.
Congrats Dom, you deserve it!