CALGARY — Eight years to the date of his hiring. Darryl Sutter has resigned as general manager of the Calgary Flames.
Assistant general manager Jay Feaster is the acting general manager until further notice.
"Darryl has performed valuable service to the Calgary Flames organization for eight years," team president Ken King said in a statement. "He was the leader that ignited a renaissance of Flames hockey, moving us from a non-playoff team to an organization that was viewed as a respected and popular contender each year.
"We thank Darryl for his leadership and his important contributions to re-establishing the Calgary Flames as a model franchise. As we enter the next phase of our growth in the NHL, we are restructuring our leadership and processes. We are pleased that Darryl has agreed to assist in an orderly transition and will provide his valuable guidance in the process. He remains dedicated to the success of the team he worked so hard to build."
In a news conference, King said he asked Sutter to voluntarily move aside.
"Darryl is stepping aside because we asked him to," King told a told reports Tuesday afternoon at the Scotiabank Saddledome. "I don't think anybody would argue that he helped in one of the most significant rebirths of a sports franchise anywhere."
Sutter, 52, led the Flames to the Game 7 of the Stanley Cup final in 2004 as head coach and general manager. In July 2006, he stepped down as head coach and focused solely on his work as general manager.
Feaster, 48, joined the team as the assistant general manager over the summer.
"We will move forward under a new administration with Jay leading our hockey operations as acting general manager," said King. "For the remainder of this season, Jay will be provided the opportunity to evaluate the team from the GM's chair and build a long-term plan.
"We believe that while we continue to compete for a playoff position this season, this period will provide both the organization and Jay time to decide on critical future decisions."
At one time, Calgarians considered Sutter a virtual genius thanks to his trade for Miikka Kiprusoff and locking down the likes of Jarome Iginla, Dion Phaneuf, Robyn Regehr, and Daymond Langkow to long-term contracts.
But then came the meltdown and simmering discontent throughout the city.
Citing locker-room differences, Sutter dealt Dion Phaneuf in a package to Toronto last winter for Matt Stajan, Niklas Hagman, Ian White and Jamal Mayers.
A year later, White and Mayers are gone. Stajan is stuck in a brutal slump with just two goals in his past 50 games, and the Flames are stuck with him, for better or for worse, thanks to a four-year deal that pays him $3.5 million US a season.
Darryl's younger brother Brent remains head coach. Brother Duane is the director of player personnel, and Ron is in charge of player development.
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