With the NHL’s regular season coming to a close a few weeks ago, the focus of many now shifts to the 2019 IIHF world championships. The Red Wings, obviously, are not fighting it out in the Stanley Cup Playoffs, so all of their players can be available, if they choose to participate.
Jeff Blashill will be behind the U.S. bench for a third straight year, and Dan Bylsma will be serving as an assistant coach. Two more members of the Red Wings will be joining them in Slovakia, as Dylan Larkin and Luke Glendening were named to the preliminary roster Thursday morning.
The full preliminary roster can be viewed here.
Larkin making himself available is a huge win for USA Hockey. He should play in a prominent role for the Americans when the tournament rolls around. Glendening is a slight surprise. I’d have to imagine Blashill put in a good word to persuade general manager Chris Drury to select the Michigan product. He can serve as one of their bottom-six centers, as well as contribute on the penalty kill.
The tournament will span from May 10th to May 26th. USA Hockey has hopes of finally reaching the gold medal game for the first time since 1950.