USA Hockey’s search for a head coach for the 2014 Winter Olympics is over, and the new boss will be revealed officially this weekend at the NHL draft. However, we already know who will get the gig.
USA Today reports Pittsburgh Penguins head coach Dan Bylsma will be announced as the head coach, and he will be the man who leads the team into the Sochi games. According to the paper, Bylsma beat out Philadelphia head coach Peter Laviolette and new Vancouver head coach John Tortorella.
Laviolette coached the team in 2006, but USA Hockey was reportedly looking to go in another direction. While the organization would have liked someone with international experience, which Bylsma has none, he still got the edge over Tortorella, who has been involved with USA Hockey in the past. Perhaps unsurprisingly, Tortorella’s abrasive behavior may have cost him a chance at the job.
“Tortorella damaged his public image this season with hostile news conferences while with the New York Rangers and a cursing incident during an NBC interview,” wrote USA Today’s Kevin Allen. “It had to make him a less attractive candidate. One reason why the NHL allows it players and coaches to go the Olympics is to help grow the game. Tortorella’s behavior this season didn’t help him.”
Nashville general manager David Poile will reportedly be named to the same position with Team USA, while Pittsburgh GM Ray Shero will be the associate GM and Anaheim consultant and former Team USA general manager Brian Burke will be named director of player development.
Team USA won the silver medal in 2010 with Ron Wilson behind the bench and Burke calling the shots as general manager.