Ducks GM Bob Murray on administrative leave for alleged verbal abuse, toxic behaviour: Report

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Bob Murray is reportedly under investigation for verbal abuse and toxic behaviour. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan/Orange County Register via Getty Images)
Bob Murray is reportedly under investigation for verbal abuse and toxic behaviour. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan/Orange County Register via Getty Images)

More details have started to emerge after the Anaheim Ducks placed general manager/executive vice president Bob Murray on administrative leave, with an investigation into his professional conduct pending.

Murray is alleged to have repeatedly verbally abused players, coaches and other personnel within the Ducks organization, according to Daily Faceoff’s Frank Seravalli.

“Working for Bob Murray was pure daily mental warfare,” an unnamed source told Seravalli. “The abuse was endless. Crazy text messages to players and staff berating them for their performance and threats of job security happened with regularity. These weren’t one-time slip-ups or mistakes. These were regular explosions and eruptions.”

The team announced that Murray was placed on administrative leave on Tuesday.

ESPN’s Emily Kaplan also reported that it wasn’t a singular incident that led to Murray being placed on leave, but rather constant behaviour leading to an abusive culture. The Daily Faceoff's report states something similar.

"The list of people who have felt his wrath first-hand over the years is long," an anonymous source told Seravalli.

There is no timeline on when the investigation into Murray will conclude, according to Kaplan.

"We recently became aware of accusations of improper professional conduct against Bob Murray. After internal review, we enlisted Sheppard Mullin to perform an independent investigation. Upon recommendation from their initial findings, we have decided to place Bob on administrative leave pending final results. In the interim, Vice President of Hockey Operations and Assistant General Manager Jeff Solomon will assume the role of Interim General Manager. We will have no further comment until the investigation is complete."

Murray joined the Ducks in July 2005 as the senior vice president of hockey operations, working in tandem with then-general manager Brian Burke, helping the team win their lone Stanley Cup in 2007. After Burke was ousted in 2008, Murray took over as Ducks general manager and briefly coached the team during the 2018-19 campaign to a 14-11-1 record.

The investigation into Murray’s conduct comes after commissioner Gary Bettman issued a memo — dated on Oct. 27, following the details of the Chicago Blackhawks sexual-assault scandal being publicly released — demanding that all 32 teams report conduct on and off the ice that is inappropriate or otherwise abusive.

To be clear, Bettman, who has long ignored the persistent culture of racism and sexual-assault in hockey shouldn’t be credited as the impetus into alleged abusive behaviour by Murray, but it does seem that the Ducks are taking the league’s directive seriously.

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