SAN DIEGO — On a day when the International Hockey League announced that it is adding a team, the Gulls named a new president, moved closer to choosing a new coach, signed a player and appeared on the verge of striking several deals with NHL teams Thursday.
The Gulls named William E. Cox team president. Cox is a longtime associate of new Gulls owner Howard Baldwin.
In addition, the Gulls signed defenseman Dave Korol to a one-year contract and confirmed that former NHL player Garry Unger was one of four finalists for the vacant coaching position.
The IHL announced that it will add the Atlanta Knights to the Western Division in 1992, giving the 46-year-old league 11 teams.
The biggest news, however, might be that the Gulls are close to cooperative franchise agreements with the New York Rangers and Minnesota Stars and are finalizing a deal on one of two NHL exhibition games the Gulls will promote at the San Diego Sports Arena, Vice President and General Manager Don Waddell said.
Waddell said a few details have to be worked out for a Sept. 27 game between the New Jersey Devils and the expansion San Jose Sharks, and he is still seeking an opponent for the Kings in a Sept. 23 exhibition game at the Sports Arena. He said he hopes to attract the Stanley Cup-champion Pittsburgh Penguins.
The Rangers and Stars are two of six teams Waddell has contacted about a minor-league affiliation. He plans to align the Gulls with four NHL teams before training camp opens Sept. 17.
Cox serves as executive vice president of Baldwin's Sports and Entertainment Group in Beverly Hills and worked under Baldwin as director of ticket sales for the Hartford Whalers from 1980 to 1986 and director of sales for the Stars in 1990.