USA Hockey has announced Bob Motzko as the head coach of the 2017 U.S. National Junior Team. He’ll lead the National Team into the 2017 tournament, being held in Montreal and Toronto starting on December 26, 2016.
He’ll look to lead the U.S. to another medal finish after they grabbed bronze at the 2016 edition of the tournament with Ron Wilson behind the bench. If they’re able to grab a medal it would only be the second time the U.S. has medaled in back-to-back years.
— SCSU Men's Hockey (@SCSUHUSKIES_MH) April 27, 2016
“Bob has found success everywhere he has coached and we’re excited to have him as head coach of our National Junior Team,” said the team’s general manager Jim Johannson. “He has a familiarity with our player pool that should blend well with his ability to get the most out of players and we look forward to his leadership.”
“It is a real honor to be asked to lead your country in what is considered one of the greatest hockey tournaments on the hockey calendar,” said Motzko, who will be making his IIHF head coaching debut at the tournament. “The growth of talent in the United States has turned us into a perennial medal contender and I expect this year to be no different. I’m excited for this challenge and eager to begin preparations for our National Junior Evaluation Camp in August as we start shaping our team for the World Junior Championship in December.”
Motzko has coached the St. Cloud Huskies since 2005, leading them to seven NCAA tournament appearances, including their fourth straight appearances this year and their first NCHC Frozen Faceoff Championship.
Dustin Nelson is the News Editor for The Hockey Writers. He’s a contributor to Hockey Prospectus, Hockey Wilderness, and writes a column for Rotowire. He’s also written for Gone Puck Wild, Wild Xtra, InDigest, Electric Literature, The Rumpus, Tiny Mix Tapes, Prefix Magazine & other publications. Have a tip? Email him at dlukenelson[at]gmail[dot]com.