Jan. 27 (UPI) -- Pittsburgh Penguins general manager Jim Rutherford abruptly resigned Wednesday, citing personal reasons.
Patrik Allvin, who is the Penguins' assistant general manager, will serve as the team's interim GM as the franchise begins a search for the 71-year-old Rutherford's replacement.
"It has been a great honor to serve as general manager of the Penguins, and to hang two more Stanley Cup banners at PPG Paints Arena," Rutherford said in a statement. "I have so many people to thank, beginning with the owners, Ron Burkle and Mario Lemieux, and team president David Morehouse.
"There always has been so much support from everyone involved with the Penguins, both on the hockey and business staffs, and, of course, from a special group of players led by Sidney Crosby. The fans here have been tremendous to me and my family. I know it's a little unusual to have this happen during a season, but just felt this was the right time to step away."
Morehouse didn't reveal why Rutherford decided to step down, saying: "I don't think there was any one thing that led to Jim resigning." Rutherford's contract was set to expire in June.
Under Rutherford, the Penguins reached the playoffs each year and won Stanley Cups in 2016 and 2017. Before joining the Penguins in June 2014, he was president and general manager of the Carolina Hurricanes/Hartford Whalers franchise for two decades.