Who is Tony Granato, the head coach of Team USA hockey?
Tony Granato, the head coach of the Team USA Men’s hockey team, has a difficult task ahead without any current NHL players on his roster. But, who is he? What are his credentials?
Tony Granato is many things. He’s an NHL alum, a dad, a husband, a coach, an olympian, and even an actor!
Granato played hockey for the University of Wisconsin-Madison in college before he was eventually drafted in the NHL. At UW Madison, he was a finalist for the Hobey Baker memorial award, given to the best player in college hockey. Furthermore, he was named the WCHA Student Athlete of the Year in the 1986-87 season, and was eventually named to the UW Athletics Hall of Fame.
After spending one season in the International Hockey League playing for the Colorado Rangers, Granato finally made his way to the NHL, starting his career off playing for the New York Rangers. He ended up playing in the NHL for 14 seasons with the Rangers, Kings, and Sharks, putting up some pretty impressive statistics.
His NHL career didn’t end as a player though, as he ended up coaching in the NHL for 14 seasons for the Colorado Avalanche, Pittsburgh Penguins, and Detroit Red Wings.
He currently serves as the head coach of the University of Wisconsin-Madison Men’s ice hockey team, where he has been since he was hired in 2016. In his short time as a head coach at UW Madison, he has had quite a list of accomplishments. He was named the 2017 Big Ten Coach of the Year, and was in consideration to be named the National Coach of the Year.
It’s interesting to note that during his first year coaching at UW, Granato was taking some classes to complete his unfinished degree, and he ended up graduating with a Bachelors degree in human development and family studies.
Between playing for and coaching at UW Madison, to playing and coaching in the NHL for a total of 28 seasons, to previously playing and coaching in the Olympics, it’s hard to imagine that anyone could be more qualified than Tony Granato to be the head coach of this year’s team. His challenge will be a unique one in that he has no current NHL players on his roster, but then again, neither does any of his competition.