February 22, 2013
Fired Lindy Ruff was master at in-game adjustments

Buffalo Sabres head coach Lindy Ruff (C) watches play in the final minute of his team's NHL hockey game against the Toronto Maple Leafs in Toronto, March 31, 2012. (REUTERS/Fred Thornhill)

There are more than a few NHL coaches happy to see Lindy Ruff at home.

Ruff was fired as the coach of the Buffalo Sabres Wednesday after 16 years behind the bench and he is held in high regard by his peers contacted by QMI Agency.

One of Ruff's strengths was his ability to make in-game adjustments. Now, that might seem like a given at the NHL level, but a couple of coaches said it was always interesting to see how quickly an opposing coach would react to wrinkles in a breakout or forecheck.

"He was one of those coaches who, if you made adjustments during the game, he would quickly make his own. We would try and use the middle of the ice and he'd adjust to take it away. You had to say, 'OK, what's next? It was a always a battle," said one coach.