CALGARY – Hockey Canada announced on Friday that Ken Holland will be Canada’s General Manager for the 2006 IIHF Men’s World Hockey Championship in Riga, Latvia, May 5-25, 2006.
This will mark Holland’s second international experience, having served as Assistant General Manager with last year’s Team Canada silver medal winning team at the 2005 Men’s Worlds in Austria.
Holland, a native of Vernon, BC, has won three Stanley Cup Championships during his 24 years with the Red Wings organization (2002, 19). Holland is in his 9th season as the Detroit Red Wings’ General Manager and Alternate Governor. Prior to that time, he handled several front-office duties for the Red Wings, including: Western Canada scout, amateur scouting director and three years as Assistant General Manager of the Red Wings.
Holland will oversee Team Canada’s player evaluation and selection prior to the start of the Championship in May. However, Holland is not expected to attend the 2006 IIHF Men’s World Championship due to the timing of the Stanley Cup playoffs and his commitment to the Red Wings. Within the next two months, Holland will be naming the rest of Team Canada’s management group that will work with him leading up to the start of the championship and who will then take a leading role at the Championship in a management capacity, in Holland’s absence.
“I am very excited to be named Team Canada’s General Manager for the upcoming Men’s World Championship in Latvia, “said Holland. “Being a part of last year’s silver medal team was a thrill, and to have the opportunity to represent my country again is something that I could not pass up. Over the next two months, we will add staff members that will work closely with myself and the coaching staff, assisting with team preparation and evaluation, and who will take the lead in overseeing the team at the event in May.”
“Ken Holland brings a wealth of experience in preparing a team, and he has had great success in selecting championship teams. We are very pleased to name Ken today as Canada’s General Manager for the 2006 World Championship and have him lead our team’s selection process and preparation as we look to continue our recent success at the Men’s World Championship event, “said Bob Nicholson, President, Hockey Canada.
Holland and Hockey Canada also announced that Canada’s National Men’s team Head Coach, Marc Habscheid, will return behind the bench at the Men’s Worlds as Canada’s Head Coach. Habscheid, who is an associate coach with Canada’s 2006 Men’s Olympic Hockey Team, led Canada, as Head Coach, to a silver medal last spring at the 2005 Men’s Worlds in Austria.
Holland and Habscheid will name Team Canada’s assistant coaches in the next couple of months.
Habscheid, a native of Swift Current, SK, just completed his second season as Canada’s National Men’s team Head Coach. His international hockey background includes participation as both a coach and as a player. As a coach, he won a silver medal at the 2003 World Junior Championship with Canada, and a silver medal as an assistant coach (2002 World Juniors).
As a player, Habscheid’s international experience includes winning a gold medal with Canada’s National Junior Team at the 1982 World Junior Hockey Championship, where he was Canada’s second top scorer (12), and top goal scorer (6) and he was also a member of Canada’s Men’s hockey team at the 1988 Olympic Winter Games in Calgary, Alberta. Habscheid also participated in the 1992 IIHF Men’s World Championship in Czechoslovakia.
Habscheid was Head Coach of the WHL’s Kelowna Rockets for four and a half seasons, leading the team to the Memorial Cup in two straight seasons, winning the Memorial Cup in 2004. Habscheid played 11 seasons in the National Hockey League with Edmonton, Minnesota, Detroit and Calgary, amassing 161 points in 345 career games.
Canada will open the 2006 IIHF Men’s World Championship in Riga on May 5th versus Denmark. All of Canada’s games will be broadcast live from Latvia on TSN/RDS, the official broadcaster of Hockey Canada.