WINNIPEG, Manitoba (AP) - Longtime hockey executive Kevin Cheveldayoff has been hired as the general manager of the NHL club relocating to Winnipeg.

The franchise formerly known as the Atlanta Thrashers announced his hiring Wednesday.

The 41-year-old Cheveldayoff recently served as assistant general manager of the Chicago Blackhawks. He also guided the Chicago Wolves to a pair of Turner Cup titles in the International Hockey League and two Calder Cup championships.

Cheveldayoff says his goal is to make the Winnipeg team "a contender for years to come."