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Devils Fire Ruff; Travis Green Interim Coach



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The New Jersey Devils made a major move as the NHL trade deadline approached, but the Devils didn’t add — or trade — a player.

Instead, they have fired coach Lindy Ruff and replaced him, on an interim basis, with associate coach Travis Green.

The move was announced by New Jersey’s president/GM Tom Fitzgerald, who broke into management with the Penguins under Ray Shero.

The Devils, who have assembled an impressive core of young talent, were widely expected to contend for the Metropolitan Division title but have stumbled to a 30-27-4 record and are just two points ahead of the seventh-place Penguins.

“I hold our entire organization to the highest level of accountability to focus on being a competitive team that expects to be a perennial playoff contender,” Fitzgerald said in a statement released by the team. “Unfortunately, we are not currently at that level, and I needed to make this decision. This was an extremely difficult conversation to have with Lindy, based on the relationship that he and I have. He was the right coach to develop our young players and, above all else, he is a tremendous person.”

Ruff, who signed a contract extension last fall, compiled a 128-125-28 during three-plus seasons behind the New Jersey bench.

Green, 53, is a former NHL center who was Fitzgerald’s teammate with the New York Islanders, Toronto and Boston.