THE hockey department decisions are starting to unfold for True North and Winnipeg's new NHL team.
True North informed Atlanta Thrashers' GM Rick Dudley on Saturday that he won't be retained as GM of the relocating team.
Dudley met Thursday in Toronto with True North chairman Mark Chipman and hockey vice-president Craig Heisinger.
The GM's vacancy will be filled by current Chicago Blackhawks assistant GM and senior director of hockey operations Kevin Cheveldayoff if True North gets its way, the Free Press reported on Friday.
True North has received permission from the Hawks to speak to Cheveldayoff, a report said late Saturday.
That's a very positive development for the new team but a potential delicate issue for the expected negotiations could be the upcoming NHL entry draft, June 24-25 in St. Paul, Minn., and Cheveldayoff's intense interaction with Chicago's preparations for the draft. It could force Winnipeg and the Blackhawks to come to some arrangement about that involvement.
True North executives have said they'd like to get their hockey department up and running well before the draft.
-- Tim Campbell