USA Hockey has announced Bill Guerin as the new general manager of the 2022 U.S. men’s Olympic hockey team.
Guerin, currently serving as GM of the Wild, replaces Stan Bowman, who resigned from the position in October following the release of Jenner & Block’s investigation of the Blackhawks’ handling of 2010 sexual assault allegations regarding former video coach Brad Aldrich.
Rangers GM Chris Drury will act as Guerin’s assistant.
USA Hockey Executive Director Pat Kelleher said that they received the Olympic handbook from the Beijing Organizing Committee on Monday and are still going through it to understand all of the COVID-19 protocols. Reports have stated that any player who tests positive will face a 3-5 week quarantine.
“There are a lot of moving parts,” Kelleher said. “There are still a lot of things that need to be discussed and hopefully answered so that everybody can feel the best about sending the best players to the Olympics from the NHL.”
The questions about whether NHL players will end up participating in the Beijing Games continue to grow and players are now speaking up about their concerns regarding potential extended quarantine times for positive tests. Should the league decide to pull out, USA Hockey will put together a roster like they did in 2018 with a mix of players from the AHL, NCAA, and those over in Europe.
For now, the focus is on crafting a competitive roster featuring NHL players.
“Part of our responsibility is to make sure that they feel comfortable going, to get all the information that we can and pass along to them,” said Guerin. “The last thing we want to do is put anybody in harm’s way. To give the players a comfort level that they’re going to be taken care of and looked after is very important.”
One name who has yet to play this season but could be a possibility is Jack Eichel. The Golden Knights forward has been out since March and underwent artificial disk replacement surgery last month. The expectation is that he will be ready to play in three to five months.
When asked about Eichel’s availability for Beijing, Guerin wouldn’t divulge details of his conversations with agent Pat Brisson, but did not say no about including him on the final roster.
“I won’t rule out anybody,” Guerin said.
Sean Leahy is a writer for Pro Hockey Talk on NBC Sports. Drop him a line at email@example.com or follow him on Twitter @Sean_Leahy.