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Sabres notebook: Former coach Pronovost dies at age 84

Marcel Pronovost, the fourth coach of the Buffalo Sabres, died Sunday at age 84.

Pronovost, who had a Hockey Hall of Fame career as a defensemen for Detroit and Toronto, coached parts of two seasons with the Sabres. He went 52-29 with 23 ties from October 1977 to December 1978, when he was fired on the same day as General Manager Punch Imlach. Pronovost took over as coach for Floyd Smith and was replaced by Billy Inglis.

Pronovost won the Stanley Cup five times as a player and worked as a scout for the New Jersey Devils when they won three championships.

“A Hall of Fame defenseman, a respected coach and for five seasons a valued member of the National Hockey League’s Central Scouting Bureau, Marcel Pronovost devoted his life to the pursuit of excellence in our sport,” NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman said in a statement. “We send condolences to Marcel’s family, his friends, the teams he served and the countless young players whose potential he recognized.”

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Jack Eichel will get his first chance to face NHL players this week. Sabres fans can watch.

Eichel, expected to be selected second overall by Buffalo during the June draft, is part of the U.S. national team at the world championships. NBC Sports announced Monday that it will televise all of the U.S. games on NBCSN.

Here is the USA Hockey television schedule: Finland, 10 a.m. Friday; Norway, 11 p.m. Saturday (same-day delay); Russia, 10 a.m. Monday; Belarus, 10 a.m. May 7; Denmark, 2 p.m. May 8; Slovenia, 3 p.m. May 10 (same-day delay); Slovakia, 10 a.m. May 12.

NBC Sports will also televise the quarterfinals, semifinals, bronze- and gold-medal games starting May 14. The tournament concludes May 17.

email: jvogl@buffnews.com

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