Shanahan may Turn to Old Buddy from his Playing Days to Fill Leafs GM Role

TJ Tucker
May 30, 2023  (7:18 PM)

There's no doubt that Brendan Shanahan has an abundance of potential candidates for the general manager's role with the Toronto Maple Leafs. However, an intriguing option has been brought forward by one of the team's former players.

A Shared History

During a recent appearance on TSN 1050 radio, Carlo Colaiacovo mentioned a candidate that has received relatively little attention: Jim Nill. Nill, a former NHL player whose career coincided with Shanahan's, made a significant impact on Shanahan during their time together in Detroit. After retiring, Nill began his post-playing career as a scout for the Ottawa Senators. He later moved on to the Detroit Red Wings, where he served as the head of amateur scouting, overseeing prospects in the AHL and European leagues, while also assuming the role of GM for the Adirondack Red Wings. Nill played a key role in the Red Wings' four Stanley Cup victories (1997, 1998, 2002, 2008), three of which occurred during Shanahan's tenure with the team.
"At the end of the day, we sit here and we wait to see what the Maple Leafs' plans are. I think a name that I heard pop up yesterday was Jim Nill of the Dallas Stars. He's got one year left on his deal and he's got a really close relationship with [Maple Leafs president] Brendan Shanahan from their days in Detroit. I know Jim Nill really well from my time in Detroit, and I think he'd be an outstanding candidate for this job, so we'll see how this plays out [and] if that's a guy they choose to interview when Dallas gets eliminated. Clearly, right now, all the talk is [Brad] Treliving, and we'll see if there's something that comes from it." - Carlo Colaiacovo.

The Challenge

If Nill is interested in the GM position with Toronto, he would need to negotiate his release from his current contract with the Dallas Stars, which has one year remaining. There is a possibility that he may consider such a move, particularly for the opportunity to work alongside someone like Shanahan.
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Shanahan may Turn to Old Buddy from his Playing Days to Fill Leafs GM Role

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