Winnipeg Jets’ GM to stay on for another 3 years as team prepares to search for new head coach

Kevin Cheveldayoff is staying on with the Winnipeg Jets for at least three more years after a difficult season that saw the team fail to make the playoffs for the first time in five seasons. 

Cheveldayoff, 52, has been the team’s only GM since the Atlanta Thrashers relocated to Winnipeg in 2011.

“There’s obviously lots of work to do here to continue to move forward and try and push this forward,” Cheveldayoff said at a news conference Monday. 

“I’m just very fortunate that I have the opportunity and the confidence from ownership to move that forward.”

The Winnipeg Jets failed to qualify for the Stanley Cup Playoffs this year, finishing eight points behind Nashville for the final Western Conference wild-card spot.

First on the agenda for Cheveldayoff will be replacing Paul Maurice, who resigned last December. 

Cheveldayoff said he met with his coaching staff Sunday evening to inform them the team will be conducting a full-scale recruitment and interview process soon.

He said he’d invited Jets interim coach Dave Lowry to be part of the pool of candidates. 

“I told him he’d earned that opportunity, so we will grant him a formal interview process in that regard,” he said at a news conference.

He said he’s also spoken with with assistant coach Wade Flaherty about coming back, but nothing has been finalized yet. 

As far as the rest of the coaching staff, Cheveldayoff said no one has been let go at this point. 

“They’re at the end of their deals. We have had conversations with them. They understand we’re going to go through the full search and what that could mean either way,” he said. 

Cheveldayoff said he’s still making his way through exit meetings with the players, but it’s clear they’re frustrated with how the season unfolded. 

“They’re disappointed, they wanted more, they feel let down, they feel they let themselves down. That’s the raw emotion that’s in there that’s the type of emotions that are in a dressing room,” he said. 

“They care, so some guys have different ways of expressing it. And from a stand point of a team winning, you need everyone on that same page.”

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