The Pittsburgh Penguins’ general manager search could be in its final hours as the Memorial Day weekend winds down. By all accounts, former Toronto Maple Leafs GM Kyle Dubas has been offered the job and is heavily considering it.
Monday, PHN learned more about the process to this point from sources involved in it in a variety of positions.
It is believed that the Penguins’ owners, the Fenway Sports Group, will fill the GM role first, then select a president of hockey operations. (It is not known if the position will retain that title, previously held by Brian Burke, because FSG executives have discussed the possibility of restructuring the front office.)
In addition to Dubas, PHN has confirmed other candidates believed to still be in the running as of Sunday night. It is not clear how many finalists there are.
Seattle assistant GM Jason Botterill, a former Penguins associate GM, appears to still be one of the candidates to succeed Ron Hextall as GM if Dubas declines to accept the job.
Steve Greeley, the AGM of the Dallas Stars, also remains on the list. Reports out of Canada over the weekend mentioned Tampa Bay Lightning AGM Mathieu Darche as a possibility.
Former Penguins player, broadcaster and coach Eddie Olzcyk has been linked to the president of hockey operations position, although he is not the only candidate. Olczyk is the color analyst for Seattle Kraken TV broadcasts and served as the Penguins’ head coach from June, 2003 through December, 2005.
He recently was a finalist for the Philadelphia Flyers’ president position, which ultimately went to Keith Jones. Olczyk is thought to have been in contention for a number of other management positions around the NHL in recent years.
Sources tell PHN that FSG not only cast a wide net, but is receiving guidance from multiple entities. Aware that FSG did not have extensive contacts or experience in the hockey community, NHL officials have offered some guidance and advice regarding potential candidates for the president’s job.
Boston Red Sox president Sam Kennedy also has been advising decision-makers throughout the process. FSG owns the Red Sox.
There is some question about the details of the duties the new president of hockey operations will handle, whether the individual holding that position will have any significant involvement in hockey-related decisions or will be more of a front-office functionary.
That seems to be an important consideration for at least one of the candidates.