Sports

In Surprise Move, Stars Dump Head Coach Jim Montgomery

Jim Montgomery led the Stars on a long postseason run in 2019 then brought the team back to contention after a 1-7-1 start to this season.
Jim Montgomery led the Stars on a long postseason run in 2019 then brought the team back to contention after a 1-7-1 start to this season. Ronald Martinez / Getty Images
This fall, Dallas Stars head coach Jim Montgomery was in trouble. His team, fresh off a surprise performance in the playoffs, began their 2019-20 campaign 1-7-1, striking a blow to their hope of returning to the postseason. Then Montgomery righted the ship, leading his team to a 16-4-2 record in their next 22 games, placing the Stars solidly in playoff position.

So it was a shock Tuesday morning when Stars general manager Jim Nill announced that the team had fired Montgomery, effective immediately.

"This decision was made due to unprofessional conduct inconsistent with the core values and beliefs of the Dallas Stars and the National Hockey League." — Jim Nill

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"The Dallas Stars expect all of our employees to act with integrity and exhibit professional behavior while working for and representing our organization," Nill said in a statement. "This decision was made due to unprofessional conduct inconsistent with the core values and beliefs of the Dallas Stars and the National Hockey League."

The Stars did not elaborate on Montgomery's conduct.

Before his firing, Montgomery had two years and $1.6 million left on his contract, according to ESPN. Interim head coach Rick Bowness, a Montgomery assistant, will lead the Stars in their game against the New Jersey Devils on Tuesday night.

We'll update this post if and when more details are available.
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Stephen Young has written about Dallas news for the Observer since 2014. He's a Dallas native and a graduate of the University of North Texas.
Contact: Stephen Young