Steve Yzerman's hiring as Tampa Bay Lightning GM is sad day for Red Wings owner
A while back, former Red Wings coach Scotty Bowman said he would be surprised if Steve Yzerman left Detroit because of his profound relationship with Wings owner Mike Ilitch. On Tuesday, the day Yzerman was hired as the Tampa Bay Lightning's new general manager, Ilitch and wife Marian released this statement:
Today is a difficult day for us, just as we know it is for Red Wings fans everywhere. It’s hard to imagine Steve Yzerman in anything other than the red and white Winged Wheel as he has been synonymous with the Red Wings and Hockeytown for as long as most of us can remember! We want to congratulate Steve on his new position with the Tampa Bay Lightning. This is an exciting and well-deserved opportunity for him and his family, and we know he will do a terrific job in this next chapter of his life. Yet, this is not easy—we’re having a difficult time, frankly, because Stevie’s been with us from the start and we consider him part of our family. We drafted him as a young and shy 18 year old—just a year after we bought the team—and he has been part of it all: the ups and downs, highs and lows, the Cups, the celebrations, really everything Red Wings over the last 27 years. We watched him grow and develop over the years into a Hall of Fame player, a wonderful husband and father and now, a very capable executive. We appreciate all Stevie has done for us, our organization and this community, and we wish him all the best. Stevie Y will always be a Red Wing and he’ll always be in our hearts.