Seattle NHL team names Hall of Famer Ron Francis as GM, report says

Seattle’s NHL franchise has reached terms with a big name as its first general manager, landing hall of famer Ron Francis, according to the Seattle Times.

Francis, 56, played 22 seasons in the league and is still the fifth-leading scorer in NHL history with 1,798 points. He’s best known in recent years for his status as an executive and minority investor with the Carolina Hurricanes, and he served as the team’s GM from 2014 until his termination in 2018.

According to the Times, Francis’ deal is “likely” for five years. Seattle, the 32nd franchise in the NHL, begins play in the 2021-22 season.

In addition to Francis’ duties in filling out front office positions and hiring a coach, he’ll also be responsible for helping the team choose a name. The TImes reports a decision on that is expected later this year.

Francis, who won two Stanley Cup championships as a player with the Penguins in the early 1990s, also played with the Whalers, Hurricanes and Maple Leafs.

As GM with the Hurricanes, Francis posted a 137-138-53 mark. He earned kudos for helping develop and acquire players such as Sebastian Aho and Teuvo Teravainen, although Carolina failed to make the playoffs during his tenure there.