Tony Granato is making his first appearance as an assistant coach of the U.S. Olympic Men’s Ice Hockey Team.
Granato currently serves as an assistant coach on the staff of U.S. Olympic Men’s Ice Hockey Team head coach Dan Bylsma with the National Hockey League’s Pittsburgh Penguins. After being hired by Pittsburgh before the 2009-10 season, Granato has helped lead the Penguins to four consecutive playoff appearances. Granato’s duties with the team includes oversight of all forwards, a group he directed to an NHL-best 3.38 goal-per-game average during the 2012-13 season. He’s also in charge of the Penguins’ penalty-killers.
Before working in Pittsburgh, Granato was with the NHL’s Colorado Avalanche for six seasons, including nearly three years as head coach (2002-04, 2008-09). In 215 games as head coach of the Avalanche, Granato assembled 104 wins, two playoff appearances and a Northwest Division title (2002-03). Granato also filled the role of assistant coach with Colorado during part of the 2002-03 season and from 2005-08.
As a player, the Downers Grove, Ill., native skated for three different NHL clubs, including the New York Rangers (1988-90), Los Angeles Kings (1990-96) and San Jose Sharks (1996-01), during a 13-year professional career. After a brain injury in the 1995-96 season nearly forced him to retire, Granato returned to the NHL and was named an NHL All-Star during the 1996-97 season. He also received the Bill Masterton Memorial Trophy that year, which is awarded annually to the NHL player who best exemplifies the qualities of perseverance, sportsmanship and dedication to hockey.
Internationally, Granato played for the United States in seven international competitions, including the 1998 Olympic Winter Games, the 1991 Canada Cup, three International Ice Hockey Federation Men’s World Championships (1985, 1986, 1987) and two IIHF World Junior Championships (1983, 1984).
Collegiately, Granato was a four-year standout at the University of Wisconsin, racking up 100 goals and 220 points in 151 games as a Badger. In 1986-87, his senior season, Granato was named the Western Collegiate Hockey Association’s Student-Athlete of the Year.
Granato and his wife, Linda, live in South Hills, Pa.