Hockey Canada, in collaboration with the Canadian Hockey League, announced Monday that Victoria Royals’ Head Coach Dave Lowry has been named the head coach of Canada’s National Junior Team for the 2016 IIHF World Junior Championship. In addition, Brandon Wheat Kings’ Owner, General Manager and Head Coach Kelly McCrimmon was announced as the bench boss for Canada’s National Men’s Summer Under-18 Team.
Lowry recently won a gold medal as an assistant coach with Team Canada at the 2015 IIHF World Junior Championship and has been the head coach of the Royals for the past three seasons. Lowry previously spent one season as head coach of the Calgary Hitmen and is also the reigning WHL Coach of the Year.
As a head coach in the WHL, Lowry has compiled a 180-89-18 record while his .659 regular season win percentage currently ranks eighth all-time in the WHL. The 19-year NHL veteran was named the head coach of Canada’s National Men’s Summer Under-18 Team in 2009, but was forced to step down after he was named an assistant coach with the Calgary Flames (NHL).
Lowry’s coaching staff for Team Canada will include Dominique Ducharme (Halifax, QMJHL), Martin Raymond (Drummondville, QMJHL) and D.J. Smith (Oshawa, OHL).
McCrimmon will participate in the Program of Excellence for the first time as head coach of Canada’s National Men’s Summer Under-18 in 2015. McCrimmon has been with the Wheat Kings as the Club’s general manager since 1988-89 and has also spent extensive time as the Club’s head coach. As a general manager, McCrimmon was named the WHL Executive of the Year in 1994-95 and 2009-10 as well as the CHL’s Executive of the Year in 2009-10.
A former Wheat Kings’ player, McCrimmon has made three trips to the MasterCard Memorial Cup with the Club (1979, 1996, 2010) and holds a 417-299-59 record behind the bench in the WHL. McCrimmon’s assistant coaches will be Sheldon Keefe (Sault Ste. Marie, OHL) and Daren Rumble (Moncton, QMJHL).
Both coaching staffs were selected by Canada’s National Junior Team policy committee and the Program of Excellence management group, alongside Scott Salmond, Hockey Canada’s vice-president of hockey operations and national teams, and Tom Renney, Hockey Canada’s president and chief executive officer.