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Blackhawks discard GM Smith

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Chicago, IL (Sports Network) - The Chicago fired general manager Mike Smith on Friday, almost exactly three years to the day that he was hired to run the team. Smith was named Chicago's seventh general manager on September 22, 2000. Senior Vice President Bob Pulford will take over in his place until a replacement is named.

The 56-year-old Smith has had a rocky relationship with head coach Brian Sutter, ultimately leading to his dismissal.

"It had become apparent to me toward the end of last season and the beginning of this year that our general manager and head coach were not on the same page," said Pulford. "From personal experience, I can tell you that hockey is a team game and everybody has to be pulling in the same direction. That just was not happening here."

Smith was the associate general manger for the Toronto before joining the organization. He became the team's manager of hockey operations in December of 1999 before being named the general manager.

The are currently 2-4-1 and sit in last place in the Central Division. Chicago has an especially young team, currently boasting six rookies on its roster.

Pulford was the head coach and general manager for the from 1977-1990. Chicago won eight division titles and made the playoffs 20 consecutive seasons during that span, posting a 361-325-136 mark.

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