The last Dom?
Hasek to make decision about retirement in coming weeks
BUFFALO, N.Y. (AP) -- Dominik Hasek will need some time to decide if his Buffalo Sabres career will continue. He already knows this season ended too quickly.
The future for the two-time NHL MVP, in doubt all season, was still murky after the Sabres lost 3-2 in overtime to the Pittsburgh Penguins in Game 7 Thursday night.
"Give me two or three weeks," said Hasek, who allowed the game-winning goal to Darius Kasparaitis 13:01 into overtime.
When asked whether it was his last game with Buffalo, Hasek said, "It's very possible, it's very possible. For now I'll think about this game, and in a couple of weeks I'll make a decision."
The Penguins moved on to the Eastern Conference finals by wiping out Buffalo's 3-2 series lead with two overtime wins.
"I'm very disappointed," Hasek said. "We lost the last two games in overtime. Both games, we were so close to winning. If they won 4-1 and 4-1, you can say they're a better team, we had no chance."
Buffalo holds a $9 million option on Hasek, but he might retire instead.
"We have some decisions to make," Buffalo coach Lindy Ruff said. "We have two very good goalies in our system."
Another player with an uncertain future is forward Doug Gilmour, who indicated before the playoffs that he will likely retire. Gilmour was late getting back into the defensive zone and trailed Kasparaitis on the winning goal. He refused comment after Thursday's loss.
Buffalo lost the first two games of the series at home before winning three straight. The Sabres were 78 seconds from clinching the series Tuesday night when Pittsburgh's Mario Lemieux scored to force overtime. On Thursday, Robert Lang made it 2-2 with 11 minutes left in regulation.
"Everybody can say we tried hard, but we don't deserve to win if four times we give up a goal after we are up by one goal," Hasek said.
"It's a tough pill to swallow when you're that close," defenseman Rhett Warrener said.
About the team's possible future without Hasek, Gilmour, and others like Dave Andreychuk, Donald Audette, and Steve Heinze, center Stu Barnes said, "Who knows what's going to happen? Obviously, we'd love to have all of them back. I could stand here all night and tell you how important these guys are.
"We're very disappointed. To lay everything we had on the line, every single guy played his heart out."