DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) – The Dallas Stars general manager Jim Nill and CEO Jim Lites have taken a 50% pay cut to help lessen the financial stress on the team. According to the reports, the cuts are retroactive to the start of the NHL suspension caused by the Coronavirus outbreak on March 12th.
“Jim and I feel a responsibility to be leaders of our team and our group,” Lites told The Dallas Morning News on Wednesday, March 25th. “The Gaglardis have been really good to us, they’ve always said yes to us on things we’ve needed to do to build the franchise. I feel a personal thanks to them, they’ve been really good to both of us.”
Nill added, “This situation we’re in is affecting everybody. There’s nobody going unscathed. I just think I’m fortunate enough at my age and where I’m at in my career to able to help some other people out. First of all, Tom Gaglardi has been very supportive of me, given me all the tools I need to work with. I know that his parent company is going through a tough time. He’s in the hotel/restaurant business and it’s been hit hard.”
“So I know they’ve had to make sacrifices up there and so can I help him out a little bit that way? And then for our organization. I know we’re making decisions on people, and by myself and Jimmy Lites making some sacrifices, does that help some other people down the food chain?” he concluded.
The Stars are not the first NHL team to have their front office executives take pay cuts, the Pittsburgh Penguins CEO and President, David Morehouse, along with GM, Jim Rutherford have also taken pay cuts during the work stoppage.
Most of the teams around the league have vowed to help part-time arena employees during the outbreak, and the Stars have teamed up to pay workers as they would have been normally.
“When we realized where this was starting to go, we realized that this was probably going to be a little longer than we thought and people have to make choices,” Nill said. “Everybody’s getting affected by this. Does this just help somewhere else down the line that they keep their job or their pay cut is not as big? We all have to make decisions, and they’re not easy, but does this just ease that burden?”
The length of the suspension is going to determine the Stars staffing decisions moving forward. It had been reported Tuesday, March 24th that the NHL employees would receive a 25% reduction in salary. The Canadiens announced temporary layoffs for 60% of their employees and the Bruins have temporarily laid off 62 employees and indefinite salary reductions for an additional 82 players.