The Buffalo Sabres have allowed the New York Rangers to interview their former coach Lindy Ruff, a source close to the situation confirmed.
The Rangers have been looking at Ruff to fill their coaching vacancy and replace John Tortorella, who was fired after a second-round loss to the Boston Bruins.
Ruff was dismissed by Sabres after 16 seasons. Before his ouster, he was the longest-serving active NHL head coach.
The Rangers also received permission from the Vancouver Canucks to speak with Alain Vigneault.
Aside from Ruff and Vigneault, former Rangers captain Mark Messier also has expressed interest in the coaching job.
New York is also expected to reach out to Pittsburgh's Dan Bylsma, whose job is on the line after the Penguins' disappointing four-game sweep at the hands of Boston in the Eastern Conference finals.
The Rangers also expressed interest in Dallas Eakins but he was earlier named coach of the Edmonton Oilers.
The 53-year-old Ruff was the 2005-06 recipient of the Jack Adams Award, though his Sabres squads have missed the playoffs in seven of the past 11 seasons.
Ruff played for the Rangers from 1988-91 and his Sabres assistant James Patrick also has Ranger ties. Patrick played for New York from 1983-94.
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