Experienced GM George McPhee the Right Choice to Guide Las Vegas Expansion Team

July 13th, 2016 by Jonathan Willis Leave a reply »

On Wednesday, the yet-to-be-named NHL expansion team in Las Vegas announced it had hired its first general manager. George McPhee, best known as the longtime GM of the Washington Capitals, will head up hockey operations during the team’s formative years.

McPhee's experience and demonstrated level of ability at the position make him a strong choice for the fledgling club.

In choosing McPhee, Las Vegas has opted to follow a path similar to the one taken by the Nashville Predators. The Preds hired David Poile, another former Capitals GM, to run the hockey side of their expansion team back in the summer of 1997. Almost 20 years later, he's still on the job, and the Predators have outperformed most of their expansion cousins.

Looking at those other recent expansion teams, we find that clubs that hired first-time general managers had disastrous results. Both the Atlanta Thrashers and Columbus Blue Jackets hired men who were new to the top job at the NHL level; Atlanta went 12 years without winning a playoff game before relocating to Winnipeg, and the Blue Jackets now have 16 seasons and two playof ...

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