Dallas Stars dismiss coach over ‘unprofessional conduct’

The Dallas Stars have fired head coach Jim Montgomery

The Dallas Stars have fired second-year coach Jim Montgomery for what the team says was unprofessional conduct. Dallas made the playoffs last season before losing in double-overtime in Game 7 of its second-round series on the road against the eventual Stanley Cup champion St. Louis Blues.

A source told TSN that the Stars "really had no choice" but to fire Montgomery, but said it was "non abuse related".

The club released a statement from general manager Jim Nill: "The Dallas Stars expect all of our employees to act with integrity and exhibit professional behavior while working for and representing our organization". Assistant coach Rick Bowness has been named interim head coach.

The Dallas Stars have fired head coach Jim Montgomery.

Elliotte Friedman would later report that the NHL Board of Governors said there were no pending investigations at the time of Bettman's announcement, so Montgomery's firing was not a part of that. Come Tuesday morning, another National Hockey League head coach has been fired and sent packing, but this time it was one none of us expected.

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The Stars now sit fourth in the Central Division with a 17-11-3 record. Nill said the current coaching staff would remain in place for the rest of the season while the Stars try to live up to high expectations.

Under Nill, the Stars have had as head coaches Lindy Ruff, Ken Hitchcock and Montgomery. Peters was also accused of physical abuse when he coached in Carolina.

"We don't like surprises", Bettman said.

The Chicago Blackhawks suspended assistant coach Marc Crawford, who was the head coach of the Dallas Stars from 2009 to '11, after two former players alleged physical abuse.

"Our clubs are on notice that if they become aware of an incident of conduct involving NHL personnel on or off the ice that is clearly inappropriate, unlawful or demonstrably abusive, or that may violate the league's policies involving NHL club personnel, we at the league office must be immediately advised", he added. A failure to do so will result in "severe discipline".

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