Avs part ways with Granato; Sherman made new GM Staff

6/3/2009 11:33:25 AM

The Colorado Avalanche completed a major organizational shuffle on Wednesday. The club named Greg Sherman the new general manager and parted ways with six members of the franchise's hockey operations staff, including head coach Tony Granato.   

Sherman spent the last seven years as team's assistant general manager and has been in the organization for the last 13 years. The team fired former general manager Francois Giguere after finishing last in the Western Conference (32-45-5) this past season.

"Greg Sherman deserves the opportunity to prove he can be an effective general manager in our business," said Lacroix in a media release. "He has shown that he possesses the necessary qualities required to be successful with this new challenge in front of him.

"Surrounded by a strong hockey staff and under my supervision, he will have all the necessary support to lead the Avalanche in this new direction," added Lacroix.

During his time as the assistant general manager, Sherman worked on contract negotiations, arbitration cases, cap management and managed personnel issues throughout the organization. He also oversaw and coordinated all financial obligations of both the Avalanche and the American Hockey League affiliate, the Lake Erie Monsters.

"I look forward to the challenge," said Sherman in the media release. "We all know the task ahead and we need to get to work. There are a lot of things to be done here. I am surrounded by a group that has great knowledge of the business and we are looking towards the future with a lot of optimism."

The team's new management structure will be as follows:
- Craig Billington remains as Assistant GM
- Eric Lacroix is the new Director of Hockey Operations
- Brad Smith remains as Director of Player Personnel but with expanded duties and responsibilities
- David Oliver, based in Cleveland with the farm team, is the new Director of Player Development

Jacques Cloutier and Dave Barr, goaltending coach Jeff Hackett, assistant to the general manager Michel Goulet and video coordinator PJ DeLuca were the other people relieved of their respective duties on Wednesday.

The moves come after the Avalanche offered their head coaching job to former star netminder Patrick Roy in May. Roy confirmed that an offer was made and that he seriously considered taking the position.

"All I can say is that the Avalanche's offer was more than interesting," Roy told a news conference in Quebec City in late May.