Former Buffalo Sabres bench boss Lindy Ruff is in line to coach Team Canada at the 2013 IIHF World Championships, according to TSN’s Darren Dreger.
Ruff, 53, was fired by the Sabres in February after getting off to a disappointing 6-10-1 start.
Prior to his dismissal, he was the NHL’s longest-serving coach (hired on July 21, 1997) and took Buffalo to four Eastern Conference finals and the 1999 Stanley Cup finals.
In 2006, he captured the Jack Adams trophy as the league’s best coach.
It’s not a surprise Hockey Canada appointed Ruff for the World Championships.
In 2010, he was part of the coaching staff that helped Canada win Olympic gold in Vancouver.
Ruff also led Team Canada to silver at the 2009 World Championships in Switzerland, and turned down an invite to coach the 2012 entry. (The ’12 gig eventually went to Brent Sutter, who was assisted by Carolina’s Kirk Muller and former Bolts coach Guy Boucher).
The 2013 Worlds will take place in Sweden and Finland from May 3-19. Canada, who finished fifth at the 2012 tournament, is in a group with the Czech Republic, Sweden, Norway, Switzerland, Denmark, Belarus and Slovenia.
The defending champion Russians are in a group with Finland, Slovakia, USA, Germany, Latvia, France and Austria.