The Dallas Stars
reportedly fired coach Dave Tippett
on Wednesday, following the first non-playoff season in his six years behind the bench.
Both TSN and ESPN.com, citing sources, reported the firing -- a move that comes on the heels of the team naming former Stars' player Joe Nieuwendyk
as general manager earlier in the month. A team spokesman said only that the club "can’t confirm anything on this today."
Tippett got a three-year contract extension through 2010-11 last summer after leading the Stars to the Western Conference Finals. But Dallas, expected to be a Stanley Cup contender this season, struggled with injuries and inconsistency for most of 2008-09, finishing 12th in the Western Conference with a 36-35-11 record for 83 points and missing the playoffs for the first time since 2001-02.
The Stars hired Tippett as the 19th coach in franchise history on May 21, 2002. He led the team to a 271-162-59 record, two Pacific Division titles (2002-03 and 2005-06), five consecutive playoff appearances and the Western Conference Finals in 2007-08. Following that season, Tippett was rewarded with a contract extension through the 2010-11 season.
Tippett came to Dallas after an 11-year career as a player, a title-winning stint with Houston of the IHL in 1999 and three seasons as an assistant coach with the Los Angeles Kings