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Wenatchee Wild terminate former head coach Constantine's contract

Kevin Constantine Kevin Constantine - Getty Images

WENATCHEE, Wash. (AP) — Former NHL coach Kevin Constantine was fired as coach of the Wenatchee Wild on Thursday, a day after he was suspended indefinitely by the Western Hockey League for making “derogatory comments of a discriminatory nature.”

In its first season in Washington after moving from Winnipeg, Manitoba, the major junior team said associate head coach Chris Clark and assistant coach Andrew Sarauer will continue to direct the club while it searches for a new head coach.

Constantine was suspended Sept. 24 pending an independent investigation that found he violated the WHL’s standard of conduct policies. The league said he will not be eligible to apply to the commissioner for reinstatement until 2025 at the earliest.

The 64-year-old Constantine coached in the NHL from 1993-2002 with the San Jose Sharks, Pittsburgh Penguins and New Jersey Devils. He coached in Austria last season, directing Szekeshfehervar Alba Volan.

Here was the full statement released by the Wild Thursday:

Following the conclusion of an independent investigation into a violation of Western Hockey League Standard of Conduct policies, the Wenatchee Wild have announced the termination of head coach Kevin Constantine’s contract with the club, effective immediately. Associate head coach Chris Clark and assistant coach Andrew Sarauer will maintain coaching duties for the team until a new head coach is named. The Wenatchee Wild and the Western Hockey League will have no further comment at this time.