Stars fire GM Joe Nieuwendyk after 4 seasons

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DALLAS (AP) -- The Dallas Stars have fired general manager Joe Nieuwendyk after four seasons, two coaches and no playoff appearances.

The Stars announced Nieuwendyk's firing in a news release Sunday.

Owner Tom Gaglardi says Nieuwendyk helped put pieces in place that will help the Stars be contenders again. But the owner says he believes it's time "to take this organization in a different direction."

Dallas is already set to name its new general manager Monday. The team has refused to comment on reports that Jim Nill, Detroit's assistant GM, will be Nieuwendyk's replacement.

Nieuwendyk had a year left on his contract.

As a player in Dallas, Nieuwendyk won the Conn Smythe Award as playoff MVP in 1999 when the Stars won their only Stanley Cup.