OTTAWA - Canadian Hockey announced today that Ottawa Senators' general manager, Pierre Gauthier, would lead Canada's entry into the 1996 World Championship in Vienna, Austria, from April 21 to .
Mr. Gauthier will join head coach Tom Renney, assistant coaches Mike Johnston, Andy Murray and Rob Cookson and Canadian Hockey's senior vice-president, hockey operations, Bob Nicholson, on the management team for the 1996 World Championship.
Renney, Johnston and Cookson are with Canada's full-time national team, and were on the coaching staffs for the 1994 Olympic silver-medal team, and the 1994 gold medal and 1995 bronze medal World Championship squads. Andy Murray, was an assistant coach with the Winnipeg Jets for two seasons, and most recently led the Canadian entry to gold at the 1995 Spengler Cup.
"Pierre brings all the elements that we need to be successful at the World Championship," said Bob Nicholson. "He is an experienced National Hockey League executive, which is critical when bringing together a roster made up primarily of NHLers. He has a great understanding of the player personnel needs in international competition, and he has proved very effective in getting the job done in a short period of time, which is a vital component at the World Championship."
"I am very honoured to be part of our country's representation at this year's World Championship," said Mr. Gauthier. "I'm looking forward to working with Tom and the coaching staff in pursuing our proud tradition of successes at the international level."
Canadian Hockey will announce its final roster of 20 skaters and three goalkeepers at a news conference Tuesday, April 16 at the Hockey Hall of Fame in Toronto. The team leaves for the Czech Republic that afternoon for a pre-competition camp and an exhibition game against the Czechs on April 18.
Canada opens the 1996 World Championship Sunday, April 21 against Slovakia. The Canadians are in Group A along with the Slovaks, Austria, Germany, Russia and the United States. Group B features the Czech Republic, Finland, France, Italy, Norway and Sweden.
Canada's medal record at the World Championship, since its return in 1977 with primarily NHL players, is one gold (1994), four silvers and four bronze medals.