Coyotes CEO relinquishes hockey duties

GLENDALE, Ariz. -- Jeff Shumway resigned as chairman and CEO of the financially troubled Phoenix Coyotes on Friday.

Shumway had served as CEO of the Coyotes since April 2006. He is relinquishing his duties with the hockey team to manage other business ventures of team owner Jerry Moyes.

"Jeff has done a great job in managing the team for me but right now I need him to focus on some of my other projects," Moyes said in a statement.

The 51-year-old Shumway's resignation removes an upper layer of management for the team coached by Wayne Gretzky. Moyes will take over as the Coyotes' governor on the NHL Board of Governors, and president Doug Moss and general manager Don Maloney will report directly to Moyes.

Moyes has been seeking buyers for the Coyotes, who are reportedly losing more than $30 million per year. With the NHL's help, they are attempting to renegotiate their Jobing.com Arena lease with the city of Glendale in an apparent effort to make the deal more attractive to potential buyers.

The Coyotes enter the All-Star break in fifth place in the Western Conference. If the playoffs started this week, they would qualify for the first time since 2002.