Don Waddell steps down, Eric Tulsky named Carolina Hurricanes interim GM ::

Don Waddell steps down, Eric Tulsky named Carolina Hurricanes interim GM ::

— Carolina Hurricanes president and general manager Don Waddell resigned from the organization Friday, ending a 10-year tenure that saw the franchise rise to a consistent playoff contender and secure Raleigh as a strong hockey market.

Waddell, 65, had been granted permission by the team to interview for other front-office openings around the NHL, including an interview with the Columbus Blue Jackets, according to recent reports.

“This morning, I spoke with [Hurricanes owner] Tom [Dundon] and informed him that I have come to the decision that now is the time for me to move to the next chapter of my career,” said Waddell in a statement.

“I have loved my experiences in the Triangle over the past 10 years, and together with a strong team, on and off the ice, we have accomplished many great victories.

“I am grateful for the support I have received from so many loyal Caniacs. This organization is in strong, capable hands and well-positioned for the future.”

Carolina named Eric Tulsky interim general manager. Tulsky has spent 10 seasons with the Hurricanes, originally joining the organization as a consultant in 2014. Darren Yorke will support Tulsky with managerial duties while continuing in his role as assistant general manager.

This summer was expected to be one of change for the team, which lost in the second round of the NHL playoffs to the New York Rangers. The roster carries numerous unrestricted free agents, including center Jake Guentzel and center Teuvo Teräväinen.

The NHL salary cap is expected to rise to $87.7 million next season, up from $83.5 million this season. The Hurricanes have about $27.3 million in projected cap space, according to

Waddell joined the Hurricanes as president on July 1, 2014 and has been the general manager since May of 2018.

Carolina won at least one round in the playoffs during each of his six seasons in charge of hockey operations. He spoke with the media on Monday about the multi-year extension of coach Rod Brind’Amour and the upcoming summer free agent signing period.

“Don helped turn our Canes into perennial contenders, snagged top prospects, and supported the development at PNC that will create jobs and keep our Canes in Raleigh for years to come,” said Governor Roy Cooper, a huge Hurricanes fan, on social media. “I’ve been grateful for his friendship over the years and I know he will be sorely missed.”

Previously, Waddell served as general manager of the Atlanta Thrashers and a scout with the Pittsburgh Penguins.

In his role as president, Waddell lobbied state lawmakers to legalize mobile sports gambling in North Carolina and helped with renovation plans to PNC Arena, the Hurricanes’ home. A $300-million renovation project is set to begin next summer.

“The Hurricanes franchise inspires fierce loyalty from the most enthusiastic fan base in professional hockey,” said Philip Isley, chairman of the Centennial Authority, which owns PNC Arena. “That doesn’t just happen. The team’s ownership and leadership has poured its soul into this team, this city and this arena, and Don Waddell has been an integral part of that work.”

The Hurricanes have sold out a franchise-record 67 games at PNC Arena. The team hosted a successful outdoor game at NC State’s Carter-Finley Stadium in 2023.

The Blue Jackets had no comment when WRAL News asked about Waddell.