Pittsburgh, PA, United States (4E Sports) – The Pittsburgh Penguins have dismissed general manager Ray Shero, three days after the team was eliminated from the Stanley Cup Playoffs despite taking a 3-1 series lead in the Eastern Conference second round over the New York Rangers.
Also, Penguins president David Morehouse announced that the team will retain coach Dan Bylsma for now.
Morehouse named assistant general manager Jason Botterill as interim GM, who is also a candidate for the full-time position.
Morehouse added the search for a new GM has begun, but Pittsburgh is not specifically targeting anyone other than Botterill.
The new GM then will evaluate Bylsma and the rest of the coaching staff before a decision is made on their future in Pittsburgh, Morehouse said.
“The new GM will be charged with overseeing and revamping our hockey operations with the goal of returning the team to championship form,” Morehouse said.
“Part of his initial duties will be to evaluate our hockey operations department, including the coaching staff, and make decisions in the best interest of the franchise moving forward,” he added.
Morehouse added that the team ownership group led by Mario Lemieux and Ron Burkle felt that it was time to move the franchise in a new direction.
The Penguins were eliminated by a lower-seeded team for the fifth consecutive season since winning the 2009 Stanley Cup, which was the reasoning behind the decision.
“We feel it is time to move our franchise in a new direction,” Lemieux and Burkle said in a joint statement. “We share the disappointment of our fans that we have not had success in the playoffs over the past five seasons.”
“We believe that new leadership in the general manager’s office will bring a new approach and new energy, and help us return to championship form,” they added.
Shero replaced Craig Patrick as GM in May 2006. Under his guidance the Penguins qualified for the playoffs in eight straight seasons, won two Eastern Conference titles and the 2009 Stanley Cup. Shero became known for his aggressive approach to the NHL Trade Deadline, which resulted in him acquiring Marian Hossa, Bill Guerin and Jarome Iginla, among others.