Photo by Andrew Knapik/MiHockey

Yzerman steps down in Tampa, reportedly moving home to Detroit?

By @StefanKubus –

Steve Yzerman has stepped down as general manager of the Tampa Bay Lightning after spending the last eight years there.

On Tuesday, the Tampa Bay Lightning announced that Yzerman would shift into a senior advisory role for the last year of his contract with the team.

“I feel this change in role is important, important for me, which will allow me to spend more time with my family and also ensure that the Tampa Bay Lightning are managed to the standards that (owner) Jeff (Vinik), all of us in this organization has come to expect,” Yzerman said in a press conference Tuesday afternoon.

Yzerman explained that he and Vinik sat down in late July after the season ended, and that’s when the decision was made. From there, the two had been working on a succession plan. Yzerman admitted it has become increasingly harder to be away from family.

“I’ve done a lot of traveling and it has worked,” Yzerman said. “I feel I’ve been able to do the job, be where I need to be as well as be where I need to be for my wife and daughters. At this point now, I have to make a decision again. At some point it’s either sign another contract to remain as general manager or not. With some time to reflect, to do the job the way it needs to be done, the way I feel it needs to be done and ultimately to be with my family as well, it’s becoming difficult to do, hence the decision.”

Yzerman added his direct presence within the organization hasn’t been figured out, but reiterated he’s there to support new GM Julian Brisebois in any way he can.

So what’s next for the former Red Wings’ Hall of Fame captain after the sudden move? Well, it sounds likely he’s heading home to Detroit.

Per Helene St. James of the Detroit Free Press, when Yzerman addressed the Tampa Bay Lightning players Tuesday morning about his departure, he said he was moving home to Detroit, where he has maintained a residence since taking the Lightning GM job in 2010. Yzerman himself confirmed he’ll now be able to spend more time with his family, but there’s no telling what happens next summer.

Under Yzerman, the Bolts have made four Conference Final appearances (2011, 2015, 2016, 2018) and one Stanley Cup Final appearance in 2015. That year, he also captured the GM of the Year award.

Meanwhile, in Detroit, Red Wings GM Ken Holland signed a two-year extension in April.