Wayne Gretzky's return to the NHL has been widely speculated on over the past few years and the rumour mill always connects Gretzky to the Toronto Maple Leafs.
However, sources say Gretzky and Tim Leiweke, the newly hired president and CEO of Maple Leafs Sports and Entertainment, have had several conversations in recent weeks about Gretzky joining MLSE in an executive capacity.
It's unclear as to why discussions broke down, but sources say both sides agreed to put things on hold and may revisit the possibility down the road. Gretzky's role was not determined.
Leiweke was hired by Maple Leaf Sports and Entertainment in April after he ended a lengthy relationship as chairman of the Sports and Entertainment wing of the Anschutz Entertainment Group, the parent company of the Los Angeles Kings.
Leiweke has a history of making splashes when it comes to signing players and seeking out executives. He was largely responsible for bringing David Beckham to Major League Soccer with the Los Angeles Galaxy and, earlier this year, he tried to lure former Lakers and Bulls head coach Phil Jackson out of retirement to join the Raptors in a front office position.