Sports Outside the Beltway

Colorado Avalanche fire coach Tony Granato

The 2008-09 NHL was the worst for the franchise since its move from Quebec. From AP-

The Colorado Avalanche fired coach Tony Granato on Wednesday in a sweeping move that also resulted in the firings of five others in the organization and the naming of Greg Sherman as general manager.

The Avalanche also fired assistant coaches Jacques Cloutier and Dave Barr, goaltending coach Jeff Hackett, assistant to the general manager Michel Goulet and video coordinator P.J. DeLuca.

Sherman had been Colorado’s assistant GM for the past seven seasons. Also promoted within the organization were Craig Billington as assistant GM and David Oliver as director of player development, succeeding Billington.

It was the second set of major offseason moves made by the team after their worst finish since moving to Colorado from Quebec in 1995. Colorado also let go of general manager Francois Giguere in April.

Granato’s job appeared to be in jeopardy when the team courted Hall of Fame goaltender Patrick Roy to be their coach. Roy turned them down.

The Avalanche were hurt by injuries and went long stretches without captain Joe Sakic, offensive threat Paul Stastny and top defenseman Adam Foote.

Sakic is 40, and Foote turns 38 this year. The Avalanche’s key players are getting on in years. I think Colorado is in for a few years of rebuilding before they become competitive again.

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