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Hawks' Davidson begins to make major front office changes


Kyle Davidson has been the Blackhawks' permanent general manager for only four days and he's already making significant changes in the front office.

The Blackhawks confirmed on Friday afternoon that vice president of amateur scouting Mark Kelley and assistant GM of pro evaluation Ryan Stewart have departed the organization. Kelley and Stewart had both been with the franchise for all three Stanley Cup wins in 2010, 2013 and 2015.

Mike Doneghey, who's been in Chicago's scouting department since 2009, will oversee amateur scouting on an interim basis and all professional scouts will report directly to Davidson.

"I am very appreciative of my time with the Blackhawks," Kelley wrote in a statement to Sportsnet's Elliotte Friedman. "A special thanks to Rocky, who has been great to me, and especially my family. I'm very proud of the work my staff accomplished on Draft Day. We had a great run. I have nothing but good memories from my time with the Blackhawks and I wish the organization and their great fans the best of luck."

These are the first major front-office changes for Davidson as he looks to put his own stamp on the staff. In a roundtable discussion with Chicago beat writers on Wednesday, Davidson addressed when he might start to make changes in the hockey operations department.

"Some things we may want to wait until the offseason," Davidson said. "We're pretty close to the end of the season now, especially in terms of little tweaks to scouting and things like game reports, that sort of thing. We're almost there, so we'll just likely to continue through this season with that.

"Those type of builds and fundamental changes to what we do will happen in the offseason. Naturally along the way, you tweak and change little things that aren't going to upset the apple cart too much and those will be ongoing. But more foundational things will be next summer."

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