May 25 2010 09:53AM
Scratch another name from the rumor pile. The Tampa Bay Lightning are calling a press conference today to announce that Steve Yzerman, a man frequently connected to the Flames in past week, has been hired as the club's GM.
Although the former Detroit Red Wing captain has the heavy stink of success about him - multiple Stanley Cup rings, a recent gold medal at the Olympics - the truth is no one really knows what kind of general manager he's going to make. His experience has been limited to picking an all-star team for Vancouver and whatever his duties included as the Wings Vice President of Hockey Operations. If he's spent the four years since retirement learning at the feet of one of the NHL's most successful GM's (and organizations in general) Yzerman may indeed be ready for the big chair.
It's a sensible gamble by the Lightning I'd say. At the very least, it may have the "Gretzky to Los Angeles" effect of invigortating a "non-traditional" market via the introduction of a legend.
On the Flames side, there's still no true indication of where the org is headed this summer. Aside from signing Bryan Cameron, the club has been silent, which could indicate just about anything this early in the offseason. That said, June tends to be a much busier month on the whole for the Flames so we're rapidly approaching a point where the team will have to lay it's cards on the table. On the Yzerman issue, we won't know for years whether Calgary missed out on opportunity to add a capable young GM or not (that is, assuming he was interested in the job at all).