Former NHL President John Ziegler Jr. has died at 84.
The NHL confirmed Ziegler's death in a statement by Commissioner Gary Bettman. Ziegler was living in Florida. The cause of death was not immediately known.
Ziegler oversaw the league's merger with the World Hockey Association and was eventually ousted following the NHL's first labor disruption during his 15-year tenure.
Ziegler was the NHL's fourth president, succeeding Clarence Campbell in 1977. Two years later, the NHL merged with the WHA by adding four teams from the upstart league, including the Edmonton Oilers.
Bettman lauded Ziegler for helping the NHL become an international league by increasing the number of European players and opening the door for Russians to compete in North America.
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