July 2, 1958 |
Guelph, Ontario, Canada
|Height||5 ft 9 in (175 cm)|
|Weight||170 lb (77 kg; 12 st 2 lb)|
|Played for||New York Rangers
New Jersey Devils
George McPhee (born July 2, 1958) is a Canadian ice hockey executive currently serving as general manager of the Vegas Golden Knights of the National Hockey League (NHL). McPhee is the former general manager of the Washington Capitals and has also served as alternate governor, vice president and special assistant to the general manager of the New York Islanders.
Prior to his career in management, McPhee was a prominent college hockey player at Bowling Green State University. There he was the recipient of the 1982 Hobey Baker Award (given to college hockey's top player), was chosen as a First-Team All-Central Collegiate Hockey Association selection in 1982, Second-Team All-CCHA honors in 1979 and 1981 and was the CCHA's Rookie of the Year in 1979. He won the 1983-84 CHL Championship (Adams Cup) as a member of the Tulsa Oilers team coached by Tom Webster.
He began his NHL career in the 1983 Stanley Cup playoffs for the New York Rangers. In the 1983 playoffs, he and Ray Cote of the Edmonton Oilers became the first players to score three goals in a single playoffs prior to playing a regular season NHL game. He had a seven-year career in the NHL with the Rangers and New Jersey Devils.
In 1992, McPhee landed his first major NHL management position, starting as vice president and director of hockey operations as well as alternate governor for the Vancouver Canucks, assisting then-general manager Pat Quinn. With McPhee, the team made the playoffs four times, won a division championship, and played in the 1994 Stanley Cup Finals, which they lost to the New York Rangers.
When McPhee joined the Washington Capitals in 1997, the team was looking to turn around its long storied history of being a regular season juggernaut that folded in the playoffs. Things began well as McPhee engineered the club's first trip to the Stanley Cup Finals in his first season. The team played well under the general management of McPhee, achieving seven Southeast Division championships (1999-2000, 2000-01, 2007-08, 2008-09, 2009-10, 2010-11 and 2012-13), eight 40-or-more win seasons (1997-98, 1999-2000, 2000-01, 2007-08, 2008-09, 2009-10, 2010-11, and 2011-12) and a franchise-record 121-point season (2009-10).
On September 25, 1999, McPhee, angry at what he perceived to be dirty play by the Chicago Blackhawks, punched then Blackhawks head coach Lorne Molleken outside the Chicago locker room after their teams' exhibition game. Molleken sustained injuries to his head and in response Blackhawks players and team aides jumped McPhee, leaving him with a torn suit. On October 1, 1999, NHL commissioner Gary Bettman suspended McPhee for one month without pay and fined him $20,000.
Throughout the 2003-04 season, McPhee and Capitals owner Ted Leonsis decided to dump salary and begin a youth movement. In a fire sale, the Capitals traded Sergei Gonchar, Jaromír Jágr, Peter Bondra, Michael Nylander, Mike Grier, Robert Lang and captain Steve Konowalchuk that season. McPhee began rebuilding the team by selecting Russian phenom Alexander Ovechkin with the first overall pick in the 2004 NHL Entry Draft; the young player lived with McPhee's family as a rookie.
The 2007-08 season would prove hopeful for McPhee, as the Capitals appeared poised to turn the corner in their development. However, after the Capitals started the season with a 6-14-1 record, McPhee fired Hanlon on November 22 and replaced him with Hershey Bears coach Bruce Boudreau. The coaching shake-up worked, and the 2007-08 season would end with an unprecedented comeback and an unexpected Southeast Division championship. McPhee's trade deadline acquisitions of veterans Sergei Fedorov, Matt Cooke and Cristobal Huet all played large roles in leading the Capitals to their third Southeast Division title.
In 2013, McPhee traded Swedish winger Filip Forsberg to the Nashville Predators in exchange for Martin Erat and Michael Latta. Forsberg was the Capitals' first round pick in the 2012 NHL Entry Draft, selected 11th overall.
On April 26, 2014, McPhee was terminated as the Capitals' general manager. He was succeeded by Brian MacLellan, a childhood friend and teammate from Guelph, Ontario and a college teammate at Bowling Green.
On July 13, 2016, McPhee left the Islanders organization after he was hired by Bill Foley, owner of the Las Vegas expansion franchise to be the new general manager of the team. McPhee was named a finalist for the NHL General Manager of the Year Award after the Knights had a phenomenal inaugural season, which he would be awarded on June 20.
McPhee interned on Wall Street for two off-seasons while playing for the New York Rangers in the 1980s. After retirement he studied law at Rutgers and clerked for a judge on the U.S. Court of International Trade, before moving into a hockey management career.
McPhee is married to wife Leah and they have three children: son Graham (middle child), a Boston College Eagles player taken #149 overall in the 2016 draft by the Edmonton Oilers, and daughters Grayson (eldest) and Adelaide (youngest).
|1978-79||Bowling Green State U.||CCHA||43||40||48||88||58||--||--||--||--||--|
|1979-80||Bowling Green State U.||CCHA||34||21||24||45||51||--||--||--||--||--|
|1980-81||Bowling Green State U.||CCHA||36||25||29||54||68||--||--||--||--||--|
|1981-82||Bowling Green State U.||CCHA||40||28||52||80||57||--||--||--||--||--|
|1982-83||New York Rangers||NHL||--||--||--||--||--||9||3||3||6||6|
|1983-84||New York Rangers||NHL||9||1||1||2||11||--||--||--||--||--|
|1984-85||New Haven Nighthawks||AHL||3||2||2||4||13||--||--||--||--||--|
|1984-85||New York Rangers||NHL||49||12||15||27||139||3||1||0||1||7|
|1985-86||New York Rangers||NHL||30||4||4||8||63||11||0||0||0||32|
|1986-87||New York Rangers||NHL||21||4||4||8||34||6||1||0||1||28|
|1987-88||New Jersey Devils||NHL||5||3||0||3||8||--||--||--||--||--|
|1988-89||New Jersey Devils||NHL||1||0||1||1||2||--||--||--||--||--|
|All-CCHA Second Team||1978-79|||
|All-CCHA Second Team||1980-81|||
|All-CCHA First Team||1981-82|||
|AHCA West All-American||1981-82|||
|NHL General Manager of the Year Award||2017-18|
|The Hockey News, Sam Pollock Award (Best GM)||2018|
|Awards and achievements|
|CCHA Rookie of the Year
|CCHA Player of the Year
|Winner of the Hobey Baker Award
|General manager of the Washington Capitals
|General manager of the Vegas Golden Knights