(TORONTO, ON) – Hockey Canada announced Thursday that David Nonis will be Canada’s general manager for the 2011 IIHF World Championship, which will take place April 29-May 15 in Bratislava and Kosice, Slovakia. Nonis is currently the senior vice-president of hockey operations with the NHL’s Toronto Maple Leafs.
Nonis will be joined on the management team by Bob Murray, the executive vice-president and general manager of the NHL’s Anaheim Ducks, Rob Blake, a Team Canada alumnus who recently joined the NHL’s hockey operations department after retiring as a player this past summer along with Brad Pascall, Hockey Canada’s vice-president of hockey operations/national teams.
“Hockey Canada is very excited to have David, Bob and Rob join Brad on our management staff for the upcoming IIHF World Championship,” said Bob Nicholson, Hockey Canada’s CEO and president. “David brings great experience at the management level while Rob has a great background at both the international and professional levels as a player.”
“I want to thank Hockey Canada for this great opportunity,” said Nonis. “I look forward to taking on this challenge of assembling a team that will go for gold in Slovakia, with the support of Bob, Rob and Brad, as well as the hockey operations department at Hockey Canada.”
David Nonis, 44, has been the Toronto Maple Leafs’ senior vice-president of hockey operations since December 6, 2008. In this capacity, he also serves as the general manager of the Toronto Marlies, the Maple Leafs’ AHL affiliate. Prior to joining the Maple Leafs front office, the native of Burnaby, B.C., was the Anaheim Ducks’ senior advisor of hockey operations from June to December 2008 and served as senior vice-president and general manager of the Vancouver Canucks for four seasons (2004-08). This will mark Nonis’ first opportunity to work with Hockey Canada on the international stage.
Bob Murray, 57, has been the Anaheim Ducks’ executive vice-president and general manager since November 2008, after joining the organization in 2005. The native of Kingston, Ont. also worked as a scout for the Vancouver Canucks from 1999-2005, and worked in the Chicago Blackhawks’ front office from 1991-99, after 15 NHL seasons as a defenceman, all with Chicago. Murray amassed 514 points in 1,008 career NHL games and was a two-time NHL all-star (1981, 1983)
Rob Blake, 41, joined the NHL’s hockey operations department in January 2011 after retiring in June 2010, following an illustrious professional and international career that spanned 20 seasons. Over the course of his playing career, the native of Simcoe, Ont., represented Canada on nine occasions, appearing in 58 international games, capturing an Olympic gold medal in 2002 and an IIHF World Championship gold medal in 1997. He was also named top defenceman at the 1998 Olympic Winter Games, where Canada finished fourth. Over his NHL career, he amassed 777 points in 1,270 games, won a Stanley Cup with Colorado in 2001 and won the James Norris Trophy as the NHL’s top defenceman in 1998.
Brad Pascall, 40, leads all hockey operations for Hockey Canada, overseeing Canada’s national men’s, women’s and sledge teams. The native of Coquitlam, B.C. has been vice-president of hockey operations/national teams since July 2010, after serving as Hockey Canada’s senior director of men’s national teams from 2006 to 2010. This will mark Pascall’s ninth IIHF World Men’s Championship with Team Canada, having also served in team operations at the 2002, 2006 and 2010 Olympic Winter Games, as well as the 2004 World Cup of Hockey.
Scott Salmond, 41, Hockey Canada’s senior director of hockey operations and national teams will lead team logistics and oversee the support staff on-site. It will mark Salmond’s ninth World Championship since joining Hockey Canada in 2001.
Nonis, along with Murray, Blake and Pascall, have started scouting and evaluating players and staff, with the expectation of naming its staff, including the coaches, in March and players in early April. Additional players could also be added after the first round of the NHL playoffs.
The team will assemble in Europe on April 22, and play in two pre-competition games, on April 24 vs. France in Paris and on April 27 vs. the Czech Republic in Prague. Canada will be based in Kosice, Slovakia for the preliminary round.