Wisconsin bench boss Mike Eaves has been named head coach of the U.S. Men’s National Team, USA Hockey announced.
“Mike is one of the outstanding young coaches in our game today,” said Paul Holmgren, general manager of Team USA and assistant general manager of the National Hockey League’s Philadelphia Flyers. “He’s an excellent teacher of the game and has worked successfully with players at all levels of hockey.”
Eaves returns to USA Hockey for the first time since 2004 after coaching the United States to gold medals at the 2002 International Ice Hockey Federation World Under-18 Championship and the 2004 IIHF World Junior Championship, the first for the U.S. at both events.
The 2004 USOC Ice Hockey National Coach of the Year, he also earned the 2004 USA Hockey Distinguished Achievement Award and was named the 2002 USOC Developmental Coach of the Year and the 2002 USA Hockey National Junior Coach of the Year.
Eaves spent 2000-02 as head coach of the U.S. National Team Development Program, in Ann Arbor, Mich., served as an assistant coach with Team USA at the 1991 Canada Cup and was assistant coach for the 1990 U.S. National Team at the World Championships.
As a player, Eaves was on the roster for the 1976 and 1978 U.S. National Teams that competed in the world championships, and also for the 1981 and 1984 U.S. teams in the Canada Cup.
Eaves just completed his fourth year behind the bench of his alma mater, adding an NCAA title as head coach to go along with his 1977 NCAA title as team captain. Eaves’ Badgers finished off a 30-10-3 season with a 2-1 victory over Boston College in the NCAA championship game at the Bradley Center in Milwaukee.
“It’s truly a thrill to be asked to coach the U.S. Men’s National Team,” said Eaves. “I’m looking forward to the challenge.”
Serving as assistant coaches for the team are Keith Allain, the current goaltending coach with the St. Louis Blues, and Jay Leach, who is an assistant coach with the Washington Capitals. Wisconsin assistant coach Mark Osiecki will be the team’s video coordinator.
The 2006 IIHF World Championship runs May 5-21, 2006 in Riga, Latvia.