Steve Yzerman Explains Decision To Step Down As GM Of Lightning

Steve Yzerman is entering the final year of his contract with the Lightning. More

"To do the job the way it needs to be done and to be with my family as well, it's becoming hard to do", Yzerman said, via ESPN.

"Over the course of the last couple of years, there's been moments to reflect on my situation", Yzerman said. To be more of a sounding board than a final say. The Lightning was hoping to sign Yzerman to a contract extension until Tuesday's stunning news.

The Lightning finished atop the Atlantic division last season with a record of 54-23-5 for 113 points before falling to the Washington Capitals in the Eastern Conference final in seven games. The Lightning made it to the Stanley Cup Final in 2015, but since then have had trouble getting over the hump.

Former Red Wings GM Jimmy Devellano, who current serves as the team's senior vice-president, said on Tuesday he was totally surprised by Yzerman's decision to abandon his post in Tampa Bay. Yzerman told the Lightning players that he's "going home to Detroit", according to Helene St. James of the Free Press.

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"I feel this change in role is important for me to allow me to spend more time with my family and to still make sure the Lightning is managed to the level everyone has come to expect", Yzerman said.

Detroit Red Wings captain Steve Yzerman skates off with the Stanley Cup after they swept the Philadelphia Flyers in four games Saturday, June 7, 1997, in Detroit.

Before coming to Tampa Bay, Yzerman spent 22 years as a Hall-of-Fame player in Detroit and almost four years in the front office of the Red Wings.

"Jeff is a great owner and I am excited to lead his hockey team and fulfill his vision", BriseBois said. He was the general manager of Calder Cup champion Norfolk Admirals in 2011-12 and reached the final on two other occasions with the Syracuse Crunch, who replaced Norfolk as Tampa's AHL affiliate in 2012-13. Internationally, Yzerman was a member of Canada's gold medal-winning team at the 2002 Winter Olympics in Salt Lake City.

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