Canucks hire Jim Rutherford to be president, interim GM

Former Pittsburgh Penguins general manager Jim Rutherford. (Gene J. Puskar/AP)

The Vancouver Canucks have hired Jim Rutherford to be president of hockey operations and interim general manager.

"It is time for a new vision and a new leader who will set a path forward for this team," said Canucks owner Francesco Aquilini in an official release. "Jim has tremendous experience building and leading winning organizations and I believe he will help build the Vancouver Canucks into a team that can compete for championships again."

One condition to Rutherford accepting the job was hockey operations receiving autonomy, Sportsnet's Iain MacIntyre reports.

Rutherford, 72, most recently served as general manager of the Pittsburgh Penguins before he resigned in January for personal reasons. He won two Stanley Cups with the Penguins, in 2016 and '17. He will assist in the search for a GM whom he can mentor, Sportsnet's Elliotte Friedman reports.

Previously, Rutherford served in the same role with the Carolina Hurricanes, where won a Stanley Cup in 2006.

The Canucks have vacancies in their front office after firing GM Jim Benning and assistant GM John Weisbrod on Sunday night. They also relieved head coach Travis Green of his duties but immediately replaced him with Bruce Boudreau, who has won his first two games in charge against the Los Angeles Kings and Boston Bruins.

Following the firings, Vancouver installed a collaborative interim management setup made up of Chris Gear, Ryan Johnson, Henrik Sedin, Daniel Sedin and Stan Smyl.

Vancouver had been without a president since Trevor Linden left the job back in the summer 2018. When asked about potentially filling the role in addition to a GM, Aquilini said that "everything is on the table" during his press conference on Monday.

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