The Toronto Maple Leafs are now entering the Kyle Dubas era.
The 32-year-old man has been promoted to general manager of the Maple Leafs following a three-season stint as assistant GM, it was announced on Friday.
Dubas will replace Lou Lamoriello, the longtime hockey executive who has been moved into a senior advisor role in Toronto after three seasons from the general manager spot. Dubas was groomed by Lamoriello and was expected by many to take over for him in the GM chair.
Dubas joined the Leafs in 2014, after serving as the general manager of the OHL's Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds for three seasons. When he made it to the big club, he also overviewed the Toronto Marlies in the American Hockey League. They had the best record in the AHL this season at 51-18-2-2. The Marlies have a 190-90-20-4 record since Dubas took over as the team's general manager four seasons ago.
In discussing the Leafs’ current situation regarding its open general manager position, former GM and new Sportsnet analyst Brian Burke recently revealed the fact that current assistant GM Kyle Dubas not only received an interview with the Colorado Avalanche last summer for their GM position, but was actually offered the job.
Dubas is already expected to have a lot of his plate this summer, for his first offseason as the head leader in the free-agent market and at the NHL Draft on June 22 in Dallas. The team is entering the summer with three key contributors from this season set to hit unrestricted free agency in James van Riemsdyk, Tyler Bozak and Leo Komarov. Let's not forget that young star forward William Nylander is also scheduled to hit restricted free agency. In addition, Auston Matthews and Mitch Marner are both eligible to sign contract extensions as of July 1 as they can both become restricted free agents in the summer of 2019.
No doubt Dubas will have to make a strong start in his new role with the team. Other pundits believed that Mark Hunter was also a candidate for the job. Hunter played for five teams during his 12-year NHL career and after retirement, became a successful coach in junior hockey. He also served as owner, vice-president, and general manager of the Ontario Hockey League’s London Knights. He joined the Leafs in 2014 as the director of player personnel.
The Leafs announced the promotion Friday morning and are expected to be holding a press conference at 12:30 p.m.