Hurricanes remove interim tag, name Eric Tulsky general manager

The 48-year-old succeeds Don Waddell as GM

The Hurricanes have named Eric Tulsky as their next general manager. (Courtesy Carolina Hurricanes)

RALEIGH — The Hurricanes have their next general manager, promoting interim GM Eric Tulsky to succeed Don Waddell.

Tulsky, 48, has been with the Hurricanes for the past decade and was promoted to assistant general manager in 2020. His work in the public sphere in analytics led to his initial hiring, but Tulsky has quickly climbed the organizational ladder, particularly since Tom Dundon bought the Hurricanes in 2018. On top of running the team’s analytics/hockey information department, Tulsky has headed its pro scouting department.


“Eric is ready for this opportunity,” Hurricanes owner Tom Dundon said in a press release. “He has a proven history of managing people and overseeing operations both outside of hockey and over the last decade with the Hurricanes. His dedication, work ethic and attention to detail make him the ideal candidate to become our next general manager. Everything we do here is collaborative, and Eric will work closely with Darren Yorke, Rod Brind’Amour and our leadership team to continue building a championship-caliber hockey club.”

Waddell resigned as Hurricanes president and general manager on May 24 and days later was named president of hockey operations and GM of the Columbus Blue Jackets.

The move came as a surprise both inside and outside the Hurricanes organization, but Tulsky quickly emerged as the front-runner to be the team’s fourth GM since relocation to North Carolina. The Philadelphia native has one of the more interesting backgrounds of any executive in an NHL front office.

Tulsky has a bachelor’s degree in chemistry and physics from Harvard and his doctorate in chemistry from the University of California, Berkeley. He has more than two dozen patents from his work in nanotechnology, but he became a leading voice in the emerging field of hockey analytics with his writings at several websites, most notably some in the SBNation network.

Hired by then-Hurricanes GM Ron Francis, Tulsky remained in the organization when Dundon bought the team and became a key voice in the franchise’s decision-making. Dundon, after demoting and then dismissing Francis, promoted Waddell — the team president who guided the franchise through its sale from Peter Karmanos Jr. to Dundon — in May 2018, adding general manager to his title.

But Dundon also implemented a collaborative front office, one that last season deeply involved himself, Waddell, Tulsky, Yorke, Brind’Amour, director of hockey operations Aaron Schwartz and others in everything from the draft and salary cap management to roster construction. So while Waddell’s departure left an empty seat at the table, it didn’t create a void that leads to the type of total reorganization many teams go through when changing GMs.

Now Tulsky will sit in the lead chair of that collective — the team still needs to hire Waddell’s replacement on the business side — and oversee perhaps the busiest offseason in Hurricanes history.

Carolina, which has reached the postseason in six consecutive seasons, entered the summer with a dozen regular contributors set for unrestricted or restricted free agency. Tulsky got one re-signed last week, inking defenseman Jalen Chatfield to a three-year, $9 million contract that keeps one piece of a blue line that has several pending UFAs.

The Hurricanes will hold a press conference at 10 a.m. at PNC Arena to formerly introduce Tulsky as their next general manager.