Sabres create scholarship fund to honor Steve Montador

The Buffalo Sabres have launched a scholarship fund in memory of Steve Montador, the veteran blueliner who tragically passed away at age 35 in February. The Sabres donated an initial $10,000 and will crowd-fund up to a goal of $50,000.

Steve Montador’s tragic death at age 35 shocked the hockey world, but the Buffalo Sabres are doing their best to make sure the blueliner who played with the club for two seasons isn’t forgotten.

Friday morning, the Sabres announced the launch of the Steve Montador “Dream Big” Scholarship Fund, which has a $50,000 goal that will be crowd-funded and go towards making a young person’s dreams come true. To kick things off, the Sabres donated $10,000 with help from the Buffalo Sabres Foundation, Alumni Association, current and former minority owner Larry Quinn.

“Steve had such an uplifting personality, always trying to help others around him and encourage them to achieve their best,” said Paul Montador, who will be on the fund’s board. “This fund is the exact way Steve would want to be remembered, as a way to support people and inspire them to achieve their dreams. I am very grateful that the Sabres have gotten the ball rolling in terms of fundraising and we know this is just the beginning of a tremendous program that will honor Steve’s legacy by helping others.”

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Montador, who played nine years total in the NHL, used to use the phrase “Dream Big” when he signed autographs hence its use as the tag line for the scholarship fund. The motto adorns the memorabilia — hats, shirts and pucks — which fans can purchase with proceeds going to the scholarship fund.

From 2009 to 2011, Montador was a member of the Sabres. Buffalo dealt Montador to the Chicago Blackhawks, where he would finish his NHL career, in June 2011 for a seventh-round pick.

In 571 career games, Montador notched 33 goals and 131 points. He also added three goals and eight points in 33 playoff outings. He was a member of the Calgary Flames team that made it to the Stanley Cup final in 2003-04, scoring one goal and three points in 20 games during that run. Montador also suited up for the Florida Panthers, Boston Bruins and Anaheim Ducks.