Hockey Canada has named Ducks Executive Vice President and General Manager Bob Murray to the management group that will lead the National Men’s Team at the 2016 World Cup of Hockey, which will be played Sept. 17-Oct. 1, 2016, in Toronto, Ont.
Doug Armstrong (Sarnia, Ont./St. Louis, NHL) will lead the management group as general manager, with assistance from Marc Bergevin (Montreal/Montreal, NHL), Rob Blake (Simcoe, Ont./Los Angeles, NHL), Ken Holland (Vernon, B.C./Detroit, NHL), Murray (Kingston, Ont./Anaheim, NHL), and Scott Salmond (Creston, B.C.), Hockey Canada’s vice-president of hockey operations and national teams.
The management group will oversee and lead operations for Team Canada, including staff selection and player evaluation and selection.
Murray has been the general manager of the Ducks since 2008 and will be a part of Team Canada management for the second time, having served as an assistant general manager at the 2011 IIHF Ice Hockey World Championship. He won the NHL General Manager of the Year award in 2013-14 and is a finalist again for the 2014-15 season. Prior to taking over as general manager in Anaheim, Murray was the Ducks’ senior vice-president of hockey operations from 2005-08, winning the Stanley Cup in 2007, and served as general manager of the NHL’s Chicago Blackhawks from 1997-99. He played 1,008 NHL games with Chicago from 1975-90 after being selected 52nd overall in the 1974 NHL Amateur Draft.
Doug Armstrong just completed his fifth season as general manager of the NHL’s St. Louis Blues and will be part of Team Canada management for the eighth time. He served as a member of the management group for the gold medal-winning 2010 and 2014 Olympic Winter Games, and was Canada’s general manager at the 2009 IIHF Ice Hockey World Championship, capturing silver. Armstrong was an assistant general manager at the 2002 and 2008 world championships, a special assistant to general manager Steve Yzerman in 2007, winning gold, and part of the management group at the 2013 worlds. Before joining the Blues, Armstrong spent 16 years with the NHL’s Dallas Stars, winning the Stanley Cup as assistant general manager in 1999. He was named NHL General Manager of the Year in 2011-12.
Marc Bergevin has spent three seasons as general manager of the NHL’s Montreal Canadiens and will join Team Canada in a management role for the first time. He was a finalist for the NHL General Manager of the Year award for the 2012-13 and 2013-14 seasons. Prior to joining Montreal, Bergevin was the director of player personnel for the NHL’s Chicago Blackhawks, winning the Stanley Cup in 2010, and served as assistant general manager during the 2011-12 season. As a player, Bergevin represented his country just once, helping Canada end a 33-year gold medal drought at the 1994 IIHF Ice Hockey World Championship. He played 21 NHL seasons with eight teams after being selected 59th overall by Chicago in the 1983 NHL Entry Draft.
Rob Blake spent two seasons as assistant general manager of the NHL’s Los Angeles Kings, following three seasons in the NHL’s player safety department. Blake assists Kings’ general manager Dean Lombardi in all facets of hockey operations, including contract negotiations, player personnel and overseeing the organization’s top prospects, while also serving as general manager of the team’s AHL affiliate, the Manchester Monarchs. He also served as a general manager at the 2014 IIHF World Championship for Canada and as an assistant general manager at the 2011 IIHF World Championship. As a player, Blake represented Canada on numerous occasions, appearing in 58 games over nine events, winning gold medals at the 2002 Olympic Winter Games, 1997 IIHF World Championship, and 1994 IIHF World Championship. Over his 20-year NHL career, Blake appeared in 1,270 regular season games, amassing 777 points (240 goals, 537 assists), winning the Stanley Cup with the Colorado Avalanche in 2001, and the James Norris Trophy as the NHL’s top defenceman in 1998. He was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in November 2014.
Ken Holland has been the general manager of the NHL’s Detroit Red Wings since 1997, and returns to Canada’s management group after winning gold at the 2010 and 2014 Olympic Winter Games. He was also part of the management group at the 2013 IIHF Ice Hockey World Championship, was general manager at the 2006 world championship, and won silver as assistant general manager at the 2005 worlds. During his time as general manager of the Red Wings, Holland has led the team to Stanley Cup championships in 1998, 2002 and 2008, and he won another as assistant general manager in 1997. He was selected 188th overall by the Toronto Maple Leafs in the 1975 NHL Amateur Draft and played four NHL games with the Hartford Whalers and Detroit.
Scott Salmond has been with Hockey Canada since 2001, serving in his current position of vice-president of hockey operations and national teams since June 2014. In this position, Salmond oversees all operations of Canada’s national men’s teams for the Olympic Winter Games, IIHF Ice Hockey World Championship, IIHF World Junior Championship and IIHF Ice Hockey U18 World Championship, as well as the sledge hockey program at the Paralympic Winter Games and IPC Sledge Hockey World Championship.
“These are some of the most respected and successful men in hockey, and we could not be more excited for them to lead Team Canada into the 2016 World Cup of Hockey,” said Tom Renney, president and chief executive officer of Hockey Canada. “There is a lot of work to be done between now and Sept. 17, 2016, and as a staff we look forward to working with the management group as we look toward a second consecutive World Cup championship for Team Canada.”
The eight teams participating in the 2016 World Cup of Hockey will include Team Canada, Team Czech Republic, Team Finland, Team Russia, Team Sweden, Team USA, Team Europe and Team North American Youngstars.
Team Europe will be comprised of a pan-European roster of players from birth countries outside of the Czech Republic, Finland, Russia and Sweden – in short, all of the other European countries who are developing world-class hockey players in ever-increasing numbers. Countries such as Slovakia, Switzerland, Germany, Austria, France, Denmark, Norway, Latvia, Belarus, Estonia, Slovenia, Kazakhstan and Lithuania (among others) will all be eligible for representation on Team Europe.
The players for Team North American Youngstars will be selected from a pool of the best young hockey players from Canada and the United States. Those players age 23 and under will be available for selection exclusively by Team North American Youngstars.
All eight teams will be comprised of 23 players, including 20 skaters and three goalies. Each National Association has the right to select its own team and must announce at least 16 members of its roster, including at least two goalies, no later than March 1, 2016, with the balance of each team’s roster to be announced no later than June 1, 2016.
To select the rosters of Team Europe and Team North American Youngstars, the National Hockey League (NHL) and the National Hockey League Players’ Association (NHLPA) will jointly name each of the management teams.
Team Canada won the most recent edition of the World Cup of Hockey in 2004, going undefeated and beating Finland 3-2 in the championship game. It finished as runner-up at the first World Cup in 1996.
The World Cup of Hockey is a joint effort of the NHLPA and the NHL, in cooperation with the International Ice Hockey Federation (IIHF).