With Coyotes' Future Murky, Gretzky Quits as Coach

'Great One' not so much behind the bench, leaves with losing record in Phoenix
By Will McCahill,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 24, 2009 7:12 PM CDT
Wayne Gretzky.   (AP Photo)
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(Newser) – With the team’s future murky, Wayne Gretzky quit today as coach of the Phoenix Coyotes, marking the end of a tenure for the “Great One” that was anything but. Since Gretzky, 48, came aboard in 2005, the Coyotes are 143-161-24. He’s a part-owner of the financially troubled team, whose sale to Canadian billionaire Jim Balsillie is being negotiated in bankruptcy court.

“We all hoped there would be a resolution earlier this month to the Coyotes ownership situation, but the decision is taking longer than expected,” reads the statement from the NHL's all-time leading scorer. “Since both remaining bidders have made it clear that I don’t fit into their future plans, I approached General Manger Don Maloney and suggested he begin looking for someone to replace me as coach.”