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Yzerman in Tampa Bay sounds strange! Hired as GM

compiled from staff and wire reports

Hall of Fame hockey player Steve Yzerman is the new general manager of the Tampa Bay Lightning. He’ll be given the task of rebuilding a franchise that’s fallen on hard times since winning its only Stanley Cup championship six years ago.

The former Detroit Red Wings captain and executive was introduced earlier this week during a press conference at the St. Pete Times Forum.

Since retiring in 2006, Yzerman has worked as a vice president for the Red Wings, the only team he played for during a 22-year career in which he scored 692 goals. accumulated 1,755 points and was part of three Stanley Cup winners.

The 45-year-old fan favorite recently led Canada to the men’s Olympic hockey gold as Hockey Canada executive director at the Vancouver Games.

Steve Yzerman (nhl)

Tampa Bay’s new owner Jeff Vinik, fired Brian Lawton as GM and Rick Tocchet as head coach after the struggling franchise missed the playoffs for the third straight season. The Lightning went 34-36-12 this season and were 53-69-26 just shy of two seasons under Tocchet.

Detroit owners Michael and Marian Ilitch congratulated Yzerman but said it will be strange to see him with another team and city.

Yzerman was not going to be given a chance in Detroit to become general manager because the two executives above him, Ken Holland and Jim Nill are going to be given a chance to sign long-term extensions soon.

In Tampa Bay, Yzerman will inherit a team that has talent, but has made three coaching changes in two years,

The roster has two star players from the Stanley Cup winner, Vincent Lecavalier and Martin St. Louis as well as Victor Hedman and Stephen Stamkos, the top pick in the 2008 NHL draft who scored 51 goals this year to tie Sidney Crosby for the NHL league lead.

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