One of Jim Nill's first acts as the new general manager of the Dallas Stars was made on Tuesday, when head coach Glen Gulutzan was fired along with assistant Paul Jerrard.
"I would like to thank Glen Gulutzan and Paul Jerrard for the work they provided to the Dallas organization over the past four seasons," Nill said. "They are both quality coaches and men, but we have decided to go in a different direction with our coaching staff and we wish them well in their next endeavors."
The writing was on the wall for Gulutzan just a few weeks ago, when GM Joe Nieuwendyk was fired as his boss in Dallas. He brought in Gulutzan from AHL Texas to take over the big club two seasons ago. Like Marc Crawford before him, Gulutzan failed to get Dallas to the playoffs in his two years on the job, getting close but not close enough.
When a new GM takes over, it's no surprise when he elects to go with his own guy behind the bench. It isn't particularly fair for guys like Gulutzan who didn't have a whole lot of time to show his worth at the NHL level as a head coach, but that's the business. Nill, who came from the Red Wings, will look for a coach who fits what he wants to do with the organization.
"Things have to change here," Nill said Tuesday. "Things haven't been right. There have been some great things here [but] we're in the business to win here and we're going to start putting some things in place to start that process."
Nill could try to tap into his Detroit pipeline or perhaps target former Stars coach Dave Tippett, who could be available this summer if he doesn't re-sign with the Coyotes. No matter what he does, Nill will get his guy in over Nieuwendyk's last guy, Gulutzan.
In two seasons -- really a season and a half with the lockout -- Gulutzan's Stars had a record of 64-57-9 record.