The NHL has suspended former Arizona Coyotes general manager and president of hockey operations John Chayka through Dec. 31, 2021, for conduct detrimental to the league and game, reports TSN's Darren Dreger.
The ruling is related to the multiple years left on Chayka's contract and his attempts to terminate the deal, Dreger adds.
Chayka and the Coyotes underwent an ugly split in July 2020. The organization said he quit on the team by terminating his contract. Chayka responded by criticizing the club's ownership.
Prior to the split, New Jersey Devils owner Josh Harris reportedly approached Coyotes owner Alex Meruelo for permission to speak to Chayka about a job opportunity. The position apparently would've had Chayka overseeing aspects of the other teams in Harris' ownership portfolio, including the Philadelphia 76ers and Crystal Palace FC. Meruelo initially denied the request but eventually allowed it to happen.
Meruelo reportedly asked commissioner Gary Bettman to adjudicate the split. Coyotes ownership apparently stated that Chayka's breach of his contract won't allow him to serve as president of hockey operations or general manager of another team in the league for the life of his deal.
Chayka became the youngest GM in NHL history when Arizona hired him at age 26 in May 2016. The team failed to make the playoffs in his first three seasons at the helm but qualified for the expanded postseason this past summer.
In August, the NHL stripped the Coyotes of their 2020 second-round pick and 2021 first-round pick for violating the league's scouting combine policy of conducting physical testing on draft-eligible players. Chayka was the team's GM when the investigation was launched in January 2020.
Prior to joining the Coyotes, Chayka was part of a hockey analytics company called Stathletes.