Former Montreal VP of Hockey Operations Joins Tampa Bay Front Office
One day after Montreal’s La Presse newspaper reported that Julien Brisebois, the Canadiens vice president of hockey operations and general manager of their AHL affiliate Hamilton Bulldogs had become the leading candidate as assistant general manager, the Bolts made the announcement that they indeed did hire BriseBois as the team’s assistant manager.
BriseBois will also become the general manager of the Lightning’s AHL affiliate Norfolk Admirals.
Brisebois was highly regarded by the Canadiens and was also their capologist – a position that he’ll take over with the Lightning. In hiring BriseBois, the Lightning fired assistant general manager Imran Khan.
Khan was promoted last season to assistant GM by former GM Brian Lawton after serving as the Lightning’s vice president of strategic planning. Khan handled all of the CBA administrative issues and helped with contracts.
Khan was an intern for Lawton at Octagon Sports Management, where Lawton had run the hockey division and Kahn was brought in to replace then assistant GM Claude Loiselle whose contract was not renewed.
Here is the announcement from the team:
The Tampa Bay Lightning hired former Montreal Canadiens executive Julien BriseBois as Assistant General Manager today, Executive Vice President and General Manager Steve Yzerman announced. BriseBois will report directly to Yzerman and assist him in all aspects of contract preparation and negotiation, salary arbitration and player transactions for the Lightning and the Norfolk Admirals (as that team’s new General Manager), while also managing interpretation of the NHL’s collective bargaining agreement and the salary cap for Tampa Bay.
“We are thrilled to add Julien to the Lightning management team today,” Yzerman said. “He is regarded as one of the best young minds in the game and he should be a strong asset as we continue in our efforts to build a first class, professionally-run franchise. On behalf of the entire Lightning organization I would like to welcome Julien to Tampa Bay.”
BriseBois, 33, spent the previous nine seasons with the Canadiens after joining the organization on September 1, 2001 as Director of Legal Affairs. In July of 2003 he added Director of Hockey Operations to his duties before being named Vice President of Hockey Operations on July 24, 2006. On August 23, 2007 BriseBois was named the general manager of Montreal’s top affiliate, the Hamilton Bulldogs of the AHL, making him the youngest currently in the league. During that time he retained his position with the Canadiens. The Bulldogs improved in each year under BriseBois’ tenure, going from 36-34-10 in 2007-08 to 52-17-11 last year. In three seasons Hamilton went 137-78-25 under his guidance.
“I am excited to join the Lightning today and thank Steve for giving me this opportunity,” said BriseBois this afternoon. “The franchise is on the right track and I personally look forward to getting started in Tampa Bay and doing everything I can to help restore a winning feeling to the organization and its fans.
“I could not embark on this new challenge without thanking the Canadiens organization, in particular Mr. Pierre Boivin, Mr. Pierre Gauthier and Mr. Bob Gainey for the ongoing support and confidence.”
A native of Greenfield Park, Quebec, BriseBois was employed by the Heenan Blaikie Law Firm before joining Montreal. During that time he worked in the field of sports law, where he represented several NHL and Major League Baseball clubs in arbitration cases as well as acting as an advisor in contract negotiations. BriseBois also participated in the production of legal documents for the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League and other motor sports organizations.
BriseBois is a graduate of the Montreal University Faculty of Law and earned a master’s degree in business administration from the John Molson School of Business at Concordia University. He is a member of the Quebec Bar, the American Bar Association and the Sports Lawyers Association. BriseBois also sits on the AHL Competition Committee and the AHL CBA Committee.
Lightning re-sign Paul Szczechura
Following the announcement on the signing of BriseBois, the Bolts signed restricted free agent Paul Szczechura to a one-year contract. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.
Here is the announcement from the team:
The Tampa Bay Lightning re-signed center Paul Szczechura to a one-year contract today, Vice President and General Manager Steve Yzerman announced today.
Szczechura, 5-foot-10, 184 pounds, played in a career-best 52 games with the Lightning last season, recording five goals, also a career high, and seven points. He also averaged 13:05 in ice time per game and ranked fifth on the team among forwards with 30 blocked shots. Szczechura also played in 35 games with the Norfolk Admirals in 2009-10, recording eight goals and 29 points. He was tied for fifth on the team for assists and tied for sixth with a plus-2 rating.
A native of Brantford, Ontario, Szczechura has played in 83 career NHL games, all with Tampa Bay, recording nine goals and 16 points with 134 shots on goal. He made his NHL debut in 2008-09, skating in 31 games with the Lightning while averaging 13:33 in ice time. That season Szczechura recorded four goals and career highs with five assists as well as nine points.
Szczechura has played in 135 career AHL games with Norfolk and the Iowa Stars. He has amassed 40 goals and 96 points. During the 2007-08 season he led Norfolk rookies in scoring and tied for the overall team lead with three game-winning goals.
Originally undrafted, the Lightning signed Szczechura as a free agent on April 24, 2008.
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