San Jose Sharks hiring Mike Grier as GM is a historic moment for NHL

Mike Grier
Nov 9, 2018; Toronto, Ontario, CAN; New Jersey Devils assistant coaches Rick Kowalsky and Mike Grier look on from behind the bench as left wing Taylor Hall (9) and left wing Marcus Johansson (90) watch the action against the Toronto Maple Leafs at Scotiabank Arena. The Maple Leafs beat the Devils 6-1. Mandatory Credit: Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports

The San Jose Sharks have announced the hiring of Mike Grier on Tuesday. He now has the historic honor of being the NHL’s first Black general manager.

“I welcome Mike as the general manager of the Sharks,” said team owner Hasso Plattner in a statement. “Mike’s successful career on the ice speaks for itself, but what impressed me the most were his leadership qualities and his overwhelming desire to win. Mike is aware of the high standards of success that are expected in San Jose and is committed to help us quickly return to that level.”

Grier, 47, spent last season with the New York Rangers as their hockey operations adviser and previously worked as a scout for the Chicago Blackhawks (2014-18) and assistant coach with the New Jersey Devils (2018-20) following a 14-year playing career.

He replaces interim general manager Joe Will, who took over in November when Doug Wilson stepped away for medical reasons. Wilson officially retired in April.

San Jose Sharks hire Mike Grier

“I am extremely proud and grateful to be given the opportunity to be the general manager of the San Jose Sharks,” Grier said in the same statement. “Along with my staff, I look forward to the challenge of building a fast, competitive, and hardworking team that Sharks fans will enjoy watching and be proud of. One of the things I remember most about playing in San Jose is the home ice advantage that our fans bring through their passion and energy, making SAP Center one of the most difficult buildings to play in.”

Grier’s first order of business is to prepare for the NHL Draft on Thursday. San Jose currently holds the 11th pick. Once that’s complete, he must hire a new head coach after Bob Boughner was relieved last week.

During his playing career, he recorded 383 points in 1,060 contests with the Edmonton Oilers, Washington Capitals, Buffalo Sabres and Sharks from 1996-2011. He spent three over those years in San Jose registering 78 points in 221 contests.

-Field Level Media contributed to this report.