Jeff Blashill, who spent the last seven seasons as head coach of the NHL’s Detroit Red Wings, is part of the coaching staff of a U.S. Men’s National Team for the fourth time. He was the head coach of the squad for three straight years (2017-19), including a bronze-medal finish in 2018. Blashill guided the U.S. to a 19-7 mark in those three world championship with his 19 wins representing the most career victories for a head coach of the U.S. Men’s National Team in the IIHF Men’s World Championship.
Overall, the 2022 IIHF Men’s World Championship marks the seventh time Blashill will be behind a U.S. bench after having also served as a goaltending coach for the 2009 U.S. National Junior Team as well as an assistant coach for the U.S. Junior Select Team that won the 2009 World Junior A Challenge and the U.S. Under-18 Men’s Select Team that earned second place at the 2006 Ivan Hlinka Memorial Tournament.
The 2021-22 season was Blashill’s seventh and final season as head coach of the Detroit Red Wings and his eighth within the organization. After spending the 2011-12 campaign as an assistant coach for Detroit, Blashill then served as head coach of the Grand Rapids Griffins, Detroit’s AHL affiliate, from 2012-15. There, he led the Griffins to three of the most successful campaigns in franchise history, including its first Calder Cup championship in the 17-year history of the franchise in 2012-13. He earned the Louis A. R. Pieri Memorial Award as the AHL's most outstanding coach in 2013-14 and was named head coach for the 2014 AHL All-Star Classic.
Blashill, who was born in Detroit but grew up in Sault Ste. Marie, Mich., joined the Red Wings organization after 11 seasons in the collegiate ranks and two seasons in the United States Hockey League. Blashill’s coaching career began as an assistant coach at his alma mater, Ferris State University, from 1998-2002 before fulfilling the same role at Miami University for six seasons (2002-08). He then made his head coaching debut with the USHL’s Indiana Ice, compiling a 72-43-5 mark as head coach and general manager while guiding the Ice to a franchise-record 39 wins in 2008-09 and a Clark Cup title as playoff champion of the USHL. After two seasons in Indiana, Blashill returned to the NCAA as the head coach at Western Michigan University in 2010-11. In one season with the Broncos, he led WMU to double its win total from the previous season and also the school’s first appearance in the CCHA championship game since 1986.
A goaltender in his playing days, Blashill spent his collegiate career at Ferris State and was the Bulldogs’ Rookie of the Year in 1994-95, earned a spot on the CCHA All-Academic Team in 1996-97 and won FSU's President's Award three consecutive years for having the highest grade-point-average on the Bulldogs. In 78 games over his four seasons in Big Rapids, he held a 27-36-5 record with two shutouts. He also played three seasons with the USHL's Des Moines Buccaneers, helping the team to a Clark Cup championship in 1992 and is one of two people in league history to win the Clark Cup as both a player and head coach.