TORONTO - The Toronto Maple Leafs have been shut down by the Florida Panthers in their attempt to talk to Joe Nieuwendyk about a management job, TSN reported Sunday on its website.
Citing sources, TSN reported that Maple Leafs interim general manager Cliff Fletcher asked the Florida Panthers for permission to speak with Nieuwendyk last week and the Panthers declined.
Toronto must wait until July 1, when Nieuwendyk's contract with the Panthers expires, before they can officially approach him.
Toronto is interested in bringing the former Maple Leaf forward on board to work alongside Fletcher and potentially ex-Canucks GM Dave Nonis.
Nieuwendyk resigned from a management job with the Panthers in April.
The Florida Panthers join the San Jose Sharks and Detroit Red Wings among the teams who have declined to give the Toronto Maple Leafs permission to speak their people.