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Sabres hire COO John Roth to run business operations

Nov 25, 2022; Buffalo, New York, USA;  A general view of the Buffalo Sabres logo on a jersey worn by Buffalo Sabres goaltender Craig Anderson (41) during the third period against the New Jersey Devils at KeyBank Center. Mandatory Credit: Timothy T. Ludwig-USA TODAY Sports

The Buffalo Sabres named John Roth as chief operating officer of the team as well as Pegula Sports & Entertainment on Tuesday.

Roth will be in charge of the Sabres’ day-to-day business operations. He spent the past 24 years working for Fidelity Investments.

His hiring comes while Sabres and Buffalo Bills president Kim Pegula continues to battle health issues. She was first hospitalized in mid-June in Florida and her ailment hasn’t been disclosed publicly.

The Buffalo News reported Tuesday that a spokesperson for the Sabres said the hiring of Roth was unrelated to Kim Pegula’s health, although she has spent time away from her duties.

Sabres co-owner Terry Pegula was pleased to add Roth to the organization.

“Over the past 12 years of knowing and working with John, he has continuously shown exemplary leadership traits and I am thrilled to officially welcome him to our organization,” Terry Pegula said in a news release. “He brings to the table a vast wealth of knowledge and business experience that will greatly benefit both PSE and the Sabres as he oversees the day-to-day operations of the business side of the organizations.

“I will continue to work directly with (general manager) Kevyn Adams leading the hockey side of our organization and know that John is looking forward to helping continue to grow the culture that Kevyn has built within the team.”

Roth said he is eager to become part of the sports scene in the Buffalo area.

“The passion surrounding Buffalo sports is second-to-none. I am truly grateful for the opportunity to lead the day-to-day business operations for both PSE and the Buffalo Sabres while continuing to foster deep connections between our organizations and the passionate fans in Western New York,” Roth said in a statement. “I am appreciative of the support the Pegulas have shown me and will work diligently to further their vision for our organizations.”

Kim Pegula, 53, and husband Terry, 71, bought the Sabres in 2011 for $189 million and the Bills in 2014 for $1.4 billion. Their daughter, Jessica, is the No. 3-ranked women’s tennis player in the world and currently playing at the Australia Open.

–Field Level Media