Some big-time Capitals alumni news dropped within the USA Hockey program on Wednesday.
Former Capitals captain Chris Clark was named the general manager of the 2023 US Men’s National Team.
Clark played in parts of five seasons for the Caps from 2005 to 2009. He ceded the captaincy to Alex Ovechkin when he was traded to Columbus in a deal that brought Jason Chimera to DC.
Chris Clark has been named the general manager of the 2023 U.S. Men’s National Team! 🇺🇸
"As someone who has played at the highest levels of the game and is now in a management role in the NHL, he is well versed in what it takes to win.” #MensWorlds
— USA Hockey (@usahockey) September 28, 2022
Clark’s best season by far in his career came with the Caps in 2006-07 where he reaped the benefits of playing right wing on a line with Ovechkin in the Russian phenom’s sophomore season. He scored 30 goals and recorded 54 total points.
The now 46-year-old has worked in the Blue Jackets organization since retiring from the game in 2011. In 2019, he was named the general manager and director of player personnel of Columbus’ AHL affiliate, the Cleveland Monsters.
“The chance to represent your country on the international stage in any capacity is always a big honor,” Clark said in a press release. “I’m looking forward to working with the advisory group and putting together a roster and staff that will represent our country well and give us the best chance to bring home a gold medal.”
His main responsibility as GM will be to put together a team for the 2023 World Championships. He has past experience with the tournament as he represented the US twice as a player in it. Once in 2002 and another appearance in 2007 where he served as the team’s captain.
Here’s the full press release:
Clark Named General Manager of 2023 U.S. Men’s National Team
COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. – Chris Clark (South Windsor, Conn.), who is in his 12th season with the Columbus Blue Jackets and fourth year as both the team’s director of player personnel and general manager of the Cleveland Monsters, the Blue Jackets AHL affiliate, will serve as general manager of the 2023 U.S. Men’s National Team it was announced today by USA Hockey.
Clark, who twice played for the U.S. Men’s National Team in the IIHF Men’s World Championship, including in 2002 and as captain in 2007, is serving as the general manager of the team for the first time.
The U.S. Men’s National Team will play in the 2023 IIHF Men’s World Championship, May 12-28, in Tampere, Finland, and Riga, Latvia. Team USA is in Group A alongside Austria, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Hungary and Sweden and will play its preliminary round games in Tampere at Nokia Arena.
“We’re excited to have Chris leading efforts in building the roster for our team,” said John Vanbiesbrouck, assistant executive director of hockey operations for USA Hockey. “He knows the player pool extremely well, and as someone who has played at the highest levels of the game and is now in a management role in the NHL, he is well versed in what it takes to win.”
The U.S. Men’s National Team Advisory Group, led by Vanbiesbrouck and including NHL general managers Kevyn Adams (Buffalo Sabres), Chris Drury (New York Ranger), Tom Fitzgerald (New Jersey Devils), Mike Grier (San Jose Sharks), Bill Guerin (Minnesota Wild), Lou Lamoriello (New York Islanders), Chris MacFarland (Colorado Avalanche), Don Waddell (Carolina Hurricanes) and Bill Zito (Florida Panthers), will assist Clark in assembling the 2023 U.S. Men’s National Team.
“The chance to represent your country on the international stage in any capacity is always a big honor,” said Clark. “I’m looking forward to working with the advisory group and putting together a roster and staff that will represent our country well and give us the best chance to bring home a gold medal.”
Clark, whose tenure with the Blue Jackets organization began in 2011-12 as a scout, transitioned to a seven-year stint as the team’s director of player development before assuming his current responsibilities. Columbus has advanced to the NHL’s Stanley Cup Playoffs on six occasions in franchise history, five of which have taken place since Clark joined the organization.
Clark played parts of 11 seasons in the NHL and accumulated 214 points, including 103 goals in 607 regular-season games. He spent five seasons with Calgary (1999-2004), helping the Flames to the 2004 Stanley Cup Finals, before moving to the Washington Capitals where he played for four-plus seasons and served as captain from 2006-09. Clark finished his NHL career with the Columbus Blue Jackets and appeared in 89 games while serving as an alternate captain.
Calgary’s third pick in the 1994 NHL Draft (77th overall), Clark also won the Calder Cup with the Saint John Flames, Calgary’s AHL affiliate, in 2001.
Clark played collegiately at Clarkson University (1994-98) where he recorded 128 points (63G, 65A) in 142 games and helped lead Clarkson to a 98-39-10 overall record, four consecutive appearances in the NCAA Tournament and two ECAC regular season championships. He served as captain of the Golden Knights in his final campaign.
NOTES: The official online home of the 2023 IIHF Men’s World Championship is 2023.IIHFWorlds.com … The U.S. is 19-9 over the last three world championships. Team USA won six of 10 games a year ago and finished fourth in the tournament … The U.S. has earned three bronze medals in the last seven tournaments, including 2021, 2018 and 2015.
Screenshot via Blue Jackets
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