The co-GM experiment that Tom Hicks decided to go with after firing Doug Armstrong back in November of 2007 has officially come to an end.
Hicks reassigned Brett Hull to the role of Executive Vice President and returned Les Jackson to the role of Director of Scouting and Player Development and named Joe Nieuwendyk as their replacement.
"We are very excited to secure Joe Nieuwendyk as the General Manager," said Hicks. "These moves are all about helping this club take the proverbial ‘next step.’ Joe is a leader and has been a winner in everything he has done. He is ready for this opportunity and has a bright future as an NHL General Manager. We want that future to be with the Dallas Stars.
"Brett and Les have done a great job as Co-General Managers, but after analyzing the situation, it is in the team’s best interest to return them to roles that fit their respective strengths. Brett will assist the club in several business areas and serve as an advisor to me and Jeff Cogen, while Les will go back to what he does best - overseeing our scouting department."
Much more after the jump.
Prior to being named the Stars' GM, Nieuwendyk served as the Special Assistant to the General Manager in Toronto this past season. Prior to that, he also served as the Special Consultant to the General Manager with the Florida Panthers and also helped Team Canada win the IIHF World Championships a few weeks ago.
"I am very excited about returning to the Dallas Stars as General Manager," said Nieuwendyk. "I am ready for this opportunity. The Dallas Stars have built a winning tradition over the years and I want to help continue that legacy. My family is very excited about returning to Dallas. I have great memories from my playing days with the Stars and look forward to helping this team win as General Manager."
As a player, Nieuwendyk won Stanley Cups with three different teams (Calgary in 1989, Dallas in 1999, New Jersey in 2003) and took home the Conn Smyth Trophy in 1999 as the most valuable player during the playoffs. He played in 1,257 NHL games, scoring 564 goals and 562 assists for a total of 1,126 points. Nieuwendyk also won a gold medal in the 2002 Olympics at Salt Lake City as a member of Team Canada.
He was traded to the Stars on December 19, 1995 from Calgary for Corey Millen and Jarome Iginla. During his career with the Stars, he scored 155 goals in 375 regular season games and tacked on 138 assists for 293 points. Dallas qualified for the playoffs in five consecutive seasons from 1997 to 2001 during Nieuwendyk's career and the Stars forward certainly gave fans moments to remember during those playoff seasons scoring 25 goals and 15 assists, good for 40 points in 61 playoff games.
Nieuwendyk was traded to the New Jersey Devils along with Jamie Langenbrunner for Jason Arnott and Randy McKay on March 19, 2002. He signed as a free agent to play for the Toronto Maple Leafs on September 9, 2003 before signing as a free agent to play for Florida before retiring in 2006.
[Note by Brandon Worley ] This is some surprising news, that basically came out of nowhere. Big thanks to Gravypan, (andwho was all over this story when it first hit. I'll have my thoughts on this move later.