The Las Vegas expansion NHL team has hired Kelly McCrimmon as its assistant general manager.

McCrimmon is well-known and widely respected in hockey circles as a brilliant talent evaluator during his time at the junior level. The owner, general manager and head coach of the Western Hockey League's Brandon Wheat Kings is now George McPhee's right-hand man in Las Vegas.

The 55-year-old led the Wheat Kings to the WHL title this past season after turning down a job in the Toronto Maple Leafs' front office a year ago. McCrimmon is a three time WHL executive of the year and was the Canadian Hockey League's executive of the year in 2009-10.

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McCrimmon starts immediately and will be responsible for all aspects of hockey decisions in Las Vegas.