Hockey Canada announced Tuesday that Dallas Stars general manager Jim Nill has been named general manager of Canada's National Men's Team for the 2015 IIHF Ice Hockey World Championship, which will be held in Prague and Ostrava, Czech Republic from May 1 - 17, 2015.
Nill will lead a management group comprised of Sean Burke (Windsor, Ont./Phoenix, NHL), Claude Loiselle (Ottawa, Ont.), George McPhee (Guelph, Ont.), Pat Verbeek (Sarnia, Ont./Tampa Bay, NHL) and Scott Salmond (Creston, B.C.), Hockey Canada's vice-president of hockey operations and national teams.
Canada's coaching staff for the 2015 IIHF Ice Hockey World Championship will be announced at a later date.
Nill, 56, is in his second season as general manager of the Dallas Stars. Since taking over on April 29, 2013, Nill had dramatically changed the team's roster and culture with a series of acquisitions, beginning with the hiring of veteran coach Lindy Ruff to be the club's 22nd coach in franchise history. Nill also made waves by acquiring center Tyler Seguin in a seven-player, blockbuster trade with the Boston Bruins in the summer of 2013, which he followed up in the summer of 2014 by acquiring center Jason Spezza from the Ottawa Senators.
Prior to joining the Stars, the native of Hanna, Alta. spent 19 seasons as a member of the Detroit Red Wings management team, serving as the club's assistant general manager for the last 15. During his time in Detroit, the team won four Stanley Cups (1997, 1998, 2002 and 2008), six Presidents' Trophies (1995, 1996, 2002, 2004, 2006 and 2008), 12 Central Division titles (1995, 1996, 1999, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009 and 2011), seven regular season Western Conference titles (1995, 1996, 2002, 2004, 2006, 2007 and 2008), and never missed the playoffs.
This marks the third time Nill will be part of Team Canada, having previously served as general manager for Team Canada at the 2004 IIHF Men's World Championship and as director of player personnel at the 2003 worlds, winning the gold medal both years.
A right wing during his playing career, Nill appeared in 524 career NHL games, recording 145 points (58-87=145) and 854 penalty minutes for St. Louis, Vancouver, Boston, Winnipeg and Detroit. Nill, who also skated for the Canadian National Team in 1979-80 and was a member of Team Canada's 1980 Olympic squad in Lake Placid, N.Y., was originally selected by St. Louis in the sixth round (89th overall) of the 1978 NHL Amateur Draft.
Canada opens the 2015 IIHF Ice Hockey World Championship against Latvia on May 1. It will also face Austria, the Czech Republic, France, Germany, Sweden and Switzerland in preliminary round play.
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