Thursday, May 12, 2005

GM denies report that The Great One to coach...well not exactly

PHOENIX (CP) - Phoenix Coyotes general manager Mike Barnett denied a report Tuesday that Wayne Gretzky is poised to take over as head coach of the team.

In an interview with FAN 590 sports radio in Toronto, Barnett said nothing was imminent despite a report in Arizona's East Valley Tribune newspaper suggesting Gretzky and the team had reached an agreement on a three-year contract extension.
"There is not an announcement pending, I can tell you that from within our organization," said Barnett. "When an announcement is made, it'll be because Wayne and his partner (chairman and governor) Steve Ellman have something to announce.
"At this point, I think whatever appears to have got a life as a story is a little bit erroneous."
The Tribune, citing "well-placed NHL sources," says Gretzky, who is part-owner of the NHL club, will officially be introduced as head coach later this week.
Barnett told the FAN Gretzky hasn't ruled out the possibility of taking over coaching duties when the NHL resumes.
"I think it's intrigued him to the point that to this stage, he has again not yet said that it's out of the question as a no," Barnett said.
Gretzky said last month he would be reluctant to take over as head coach if the NHL decides to open next season with replacement players.
-Referenced from

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