One of the greatest American players has been handed one of USA Hockey’s most prolific jobs.
Phil Housley, a seven-time NHL All-Star, has been named the head coach of the Team USA squad for the 2013 World Junior tournament in Ufa, Russia.
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Housley, who was an assistant coach of the U.S. National Junior Team that won bronze in 2007 and 2011, guided the boys’ hockey team at Stillwater High School in Minnesota to a 12-11-2 regular-season record in 2011-12.
He was inducted into the U.S. Hockey Hall of Fame in 2004, the Buffalo Sabres Hall of Fame in 2007, and became only the 20th American inducted into the International Ice Hockey Federation Hall of Fame in May.
He’s currently eligible for enshrinement into the Hockey Hall of Fame.
This will be a significant tournament for USA Hockey. The 2012 team crashed out of the group stage, landed in the relegation round and finished in seventh place, the worst American placing since 1999.
As such, Housley is a significant hire. He’ll be expected to return Team USA to the glory that saw them win two golds and two bronzes from 2004-11, finishing no lower than fifth in any of the competitions.