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NOTES

Fletcher Out as Maple Leaf President

May 25, 1997|From Staff and Wire Reports

The Toronto Maple Leafs, whose fortunes have fallen the last three years, fired President and General Manager Cliff Fletcher on Saturday.

Assistant general manager Bill Watters was promoted to interim general manager, and former Buffalo general manager John Muckler is being considered as a full-time replacement.

The club said Fletcher, who had two years left on his contract, was stepping down after six years and that ownership was "seeking new directions to reposition the Maple Leafs for future success."

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Don't add the name of Buffalo's Ted Nolan to the list of possible candidates to replace Ron Wilson as Mighty Duck coach just yet. Nolan has been told by Buffalo management that he has permission to talk to other teams about coaching jobs.

But Duck General Manager Jack Ferreira said he has not spoken to the Sabres about Nolan and does not consider him a candidate "right now." Nolan could not be reached for comment.

Nolan would be an attractive candidate, having coached the Sabres to a 40-30-12 record and the Northeast Division title this past season. The Sabres also reached the Eastern Conference semifinals, but lost to the Philadelphia Flyers in five games. His two-season record as Sabre coach is 73-72-19.

Phoenix General Manager Bobby Smith interviewed Wilson on Saturday in the Southland.

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Montreal has offered its coaching job to Alain Vigneault, most recently a coach in the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League, according to Radiomedia, a Quebec radio chain.

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