Report: Murray, Benning emerge as finalists for Buffalo’s GM gig

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It sounds as though the Buffalo Sabres’ GM search has been whittled down to two final candidates.

Ottawa assistant GM Tim Murray — who has reportedly interviewed twice for the job — and Boston assistant GM Jim Benning are believed to be the frontrunners for Darcy Regier’s old job, according to the Ottawa Sun.

Murray, 50, is a veteran hockey man that worked with the Panthers, Ducks and Rangers before joining the Ottawa organization in 2007, working under his uncle — GM Bryan Murray.

During his time with the Sens the younger Murray’s primarily been in charge of the club’s farm team in AHL Binghamton (the B-Sens captured the Calder Cup in 2011) and has worked extensively on a number of Ottawa’s key drafts.

Based on various reports, Murray appears to favored for the job, though Benning still remains in the hunt.

Benning, also 50, is a former NHL defenseman that’s been with Boston for the last eight years, serving as Peter Chiarelli’s assistant since 2006. Benning also has major ties to the Buffalo organization having worked there for 12 seasons, including eight as the director of amateur scouting.

Sabres president Pat LaFontaine was granted permission to speak with Benning back in mid-November about the vacant GM post.