Dec. 10 (UPI) -- The Dallas Stars fired head coach Jim Montgomery for committing a "material act of unprofessionalism," general manager Jim Nill announced Tuesday.
"The Dallas Stars expect all of our employees to act with integrity and exhibit professional behavior while working for and representing our organization," Nill said in a statement. "This decision was made due to unprofessional conduct inconsistent with the core values and beliefs of the Dallas Stars and the National Hockey League."
Nill told reporters Tuesday he was informed of the act by an outsider Sunday and the team conducted an investigation. He said the probe revealed information that left him no choice but to fire Montgomery.
"We went through all of the records, information we received," Nill said. "This all came to light on Sunday and once I received all the information, we sat down to digest everything. We talked to general counsel and made our decision."
Nill said the act wasn't criminal and had nothing to do with abusive behavior toward current or past players. He also said there were no other employees involved in Montgomery's "act" but declined to elaborate on what occurred. He called the behavior a "total surprise" to him.
"I'm not going to discuss the act. Unfortunately, I can't," Nill said. "That's out of respect for everyone involved. We decided this was unprofessional and a decision had to be made."
The Stars hired Montgomery, 50, in May 2018 after he spent five seasons as coach at the University of Denver. He had two years remaining on his contract that was scheduled to pay him $1.6 million per season.
Montgomery posted a 60-43-10 record in the NHL and guided the Stars to the second round of the playoffs last season. Dallas forward Jamie Benn told reporters the team wants answers but believe the organization made the right move.
"We all want to know all the answers," Benn said. "But that's not the case. We believe that Jim Nill and our organization made the right move. So we'll trust in them."
Assistant coach Rick Bowness will take over as interim head coach. The Stars, who are currently fourth in the Central Division, will host the New Jersey Devils on Tuesday night.