The Carolina Hurricanes on Wednesday announced that the team has hired former Dallas Stars general manager and Hockey Hall of Fame player Joe Nieuwendyk as a pro scout and advisor. Nieuwendyk, who was inducted into the Hall in 2011 alongside former teammates Ed Belfour and Doug Gilmour and one-time Hartford Whalers defenseman Mark Howe, becomes the second member of the Canes' front office (alongside new boss Ron Francis) with a Hall of Fame plaque, and the fifth member of the Canes' braintrust (Francis, Cory Stillman, Rod Brind'Amour and Glen Wesley) who earned a Stanley Cup ring as a player.
Nieuwendyk spent four years as the Stars' GM, the team with which he won the second of his three Cups in 1999. He is likely most remembered during his tenure in Dallas for not offering a new contract following the 2010 season to Mike Modano, who had played his entire career with the franchise and won the Cup alongside Nieuwendyk in 1999. Modano eventually signed with the Red Wings for the final year of his career, and returned to Dallas to serve in an advising role similar to the one Nieuwendyk now takes with the Canes.
In 2011, Nieuwendyk made his highest-profile trade, shipping James Neal and Matt Niskanen to the Penguins for Alex Goligoski, who has slowly become the keystone of the Stars' defense and made strides toward being a true #1 defenseman under coach Lindy Ruff last season.
In the press release, Francis says that Nieuwendyk will remain based in Dallas despite working for the Hurricanes. It is likely that Nieuwendyk will scout the Western Conference for the club, with Raleigh-based scouts Dave Hunter and Greg Stefan staying a bit closer to home. In his role as a scout, Nieuwendyk will report to director of scouting Marshall Johnston, but as an advisor he will have the ear of Francis and assistant GMs Brian Tatum, Ricky Olczyk and Mike Vellucci.
The release from the team is below.
Ron Francis, Executive Vice President and General Manager of the National Hockey League's Carolina Hurricanes, today announced that the team has hired Hockey Hall of Famer Joe Nieuwendyk to serve as a professional scout and advisor.
"Joe brings a wealth of experience and knowledge to our organization," said Francis. "He will be based in Dallas, and will be a major asset to the Hurricanes in player evaluations."
Nieuwendyk, 47, served as the general manager for the Dallas Stars from 2009-2013, acquiring many of the players that formed the foundation of the Stars' playoff team in 2014, including Alex Goligoski, Kari Lehtonen, Cody Eakin, Alex Chiasson, Ray Whitney, Antoine Roussel and Brenden Dillon. Prior to joining the Stars, Nieuwendyk served in advisory roles for the Maple Leafs and Panthers, and served as assistant general manager for Canada's silver-medal-winning team at the 2009 International Ice Hockey Federation World Championship.
As a player, Nieuwendyk won the Stanley Cup with three different teams in three different decades, capturing championships with Calgary in 1989, Dallas in 1999 and New Jersey in 2003. The Whitby, Ont., native played 1,257 career NHL games, scoring 564 career goals and totaling 562 assists (1,126 points) and was a four-time NHL All-Star. He won the Calder Trophy as rookie of the year after netting 51 goals in 1987-88, and was presented with the King Clancy Trophy for his humanitarian and leadership contributions in 1995.
Nieuwendyk appeared in 158 career Stanley Cup playoff games, totaling 116 points (66g, 50a) and winning the Conn Smythe Trophy as the most valuable player in the 1999 Stanley Cup playoffs. He was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 2011.