The U.S. Men's National Team faces Finland today in its first preliminary round game of the 2021 IIHF Men's World Championship in Riga, Latvia.
THE SERIES vs. FINLAND
The U.S. and Finland have met on 64 previous occasions in the world championship with the U.S. holding a 22-2-2-30-8 (W-OTW-OTL-L-T) record against the Finns. The last meeting between the two teams needed overtime as the U.S. edged Finland, 3-2, behind a game-winning goal from Dylan Larkin and 24-save effort from Cory Schneider.
Chris Drury, recently elevated to President and General Manager for the NHL's New York Rangers, is the general manager of the 2021 U.S. Men's National Team. Jack Capuano, associate coach for the NHL's Ottawa Senators, is serving as head coach of the U.S. Men's National Team. He is joined by assistant coaches Nate Leaman (Providence College) and Adam Nightingale (USA Hockey's NTDP). In addition, Kevin Reiter (USA Hockey's NTDP) will serve as goaltending coach and Mike King (Ottawa Senators) as video coach.
Team USA has a 26-player roster, which includes 14 forwards, nine defenseman and three goaltenders. In a team meeting last night, head coach Jack Capuano announced that Justin Abdelkader (Muskegon, Mich.) will captain Team USA while Matt Roy and Colin Blackwell (Lawrence, Mass.) will serve as alternate captains.
LAST TIME IN LATVIA
In 2006, the only other time the tournament was held in Riga, Latvia, the U.S. went 4-3-0-0 to finish in seventh place. Paul Holmgren served as general manager and Mike Eaves led Team USA as head coach alongside assistant coaches Keith Allain and Jay Leach.
Richard Park was captain and joined by alternate captains Hal Gill and Ryan Malone. Dustin Brown finished as Team USA's top goal scorer (5) and point producer (7) while Craig Anderson finished with a 3-2-0 record, 2.36 goals-against-average and .908 save percentage as Team USA's starting goaltender.