Brent Sutter confirmed Thursday that he is stepping down as general manager and head coach of the WHL's Red Deer Rebels, amid reports that he will join the New Jersey Devils as head coach.
Sutter, 45, declined to elaborate on his future plans, other than that he will remain owner of the Rebels, which he purchased in 1999.
Brent Sutter reportedly is poised to become head coach of the Devils.
(Ryan Remiorz/Canadian Press)
New Jersey is the only NHL team seeking a head coach, having fired Claude Julien on April 2.
Devils president and GM Lou Lamoriello replaced him on an interim basis until a new head coach, presumably Sutter, was hired.
Sutter, a two-time Stanley Cup champion with the New York Islanders, coached the Rebels to the 2001 Memorial Cup championship and the Canadian national junior team to consecutive world championships in 2005 and 2006.
Last month, he agreed to coach Team Canada in a junior summit series against Russia from Aug. 27 to Sept. 9.
Sutter gained a reputation as an abrasive forward and leader in his 19 NHL seasons with the Islanders and Chicago Blackhawks.
The native of Viking, Alta., totalled 363 goals and 466 assists for 829 points with 1,054 penalty minutes in 1,111 NHL games.
Brian Sutter, the oldest of six Sutters to play in the NHL, will take over as head coach the Rebels.
The 50-year-old forward starred for the St. Louis Blues from 1976 to 1988, and later coached them, the Boston Bruins, the Calgary Flames and the Chicago Blackhawks.
He won the Jack Adams Award as NHL coach of the year in 1991.With files from the Canadian Press