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Hurricanes: DG Don Waddell given permission to go elsewhere
Credit: Photo by Jaylynn Nash/Getty Images

For the past few years, the Hurricanes have been one of the NHL’s top teams. That doesn’t translate into a ton of playoff success, but we’re talking about a team that, year after year, wins a lot of games.

The core is solid, after all.

And one of the architects of that success is GM Don Waddell, who’s been on the job since 2018. The club has made the playoffs in each of the six seasons under his stewardship, a fine track record.

According to Pierre LeBrun’s report this evening, Waddell has been given permission to talk to other teams to try and find work.

His contract in Carolina is about to expire… and the Hurricanes are expecting him to leave.

Waddell is well known in Montreal for, among other things, the two most recent hostile offers in the NHL. He matched the offer made by the Habs to Sebastian Aho before going on to lure Jesperi Kotkaniemi from the Tricolore a few years later.

I’m sure he doesn’t regret the first decision… but he may regret the second (although it may not have been his alone).

If he leaves soon, then, he may not have to decide whether to buy out KK‘s contract.

And he could land on his feet very quickly: LeBrun and Elliotte Friedman report that Waddell has interviewed for the position of GM of the Blue Jackets.

A position for which Marc Bergevin’s name had been circulating, by the way. After Kotkaniemi, this would be the second thing Waddell would steal from Bergevin in three years.

Remember that the Blue Jackets want a GM with hockey experience. In Waddell, they’d have one with years of experience, and more importantly, experience in the GM’s chair.

We’ll have to see if Waddell gets the job, but clearly, he’s a star candidate for the position.

It remains to be seen who would replace him in Carolina if he leaves… but it’s safe to assume that Bergevin’s Eric Tulsky, an internal candidate who’s been seen as a future GM for years, starts with a head start.

In gusts

– Speaking of the Hurricanes.

– The glass is half full, as they say.

– There was some tension between Filip Hronek and the Vancouver media today.

– Could Linus Ullmark end up in Ottawa?

– Enjoy.

– Learn more about the Montreal team.

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