Arrow-right Camera

Color Scheme

Subscribe now
Spokane Chiefs

Spokane Chiefs coach Ryan Smith named assistant to Team Canada at U18 World Championship

The Spokane Chiefs coach Ryan Smith speaks during a press conference on Monday, Jun 27, 2022, at Spokane Memorial Arena in Spokane, Wash.  (Tyler Tjomsland/The Spokesman-Review)

From staff and wire reports

Spokane Chiefs head coach Ryan Smith was named as Team Canada’s assistant coach for the 2024 IIHF U18 World Championship, April 25 through May 5 in Espoo and Vantaa, Finland, the Chiefs announced on Thursday.

Smith is coming off his second full season as the Chiefs head coach. The team finished the regular season with a 30-32-5-1 record, doubling their wins from last season and working their way into the eighth and final spot in the Western Conference playoffs.

“I am extremely honored to be asked to help coach Team Canada at the IIHF U18 World Championships,” Smith said. “Anytime you get the opportunity to represent your country it is privilege. I am excited to coach the group that will be filled with potential future NHLers. Although I wish the Chiefs were still playing this is a great chance to extend the hockey season and play for a world championship.”

Smith returns to Hockey Canada after serving as Team Canada’s head coach for the Youth Olympic Games in South Korea this winter, where he coached current Chiefs prospects goalie Carter Esler and forward Mathis Preston. In November 2022, Smith was an assistant for Team Canada Red at the U17 World Hockey Challenge, where he coached Chiefs’ forward Berkly Catton and other WHL 2006-born players like Tij Iginla and Carson Wetsch and helped lead Canada Red to a silver medal.

Canada opens the 2024 IIHF U18 World Championship against Sweden on April 25 at Vantaa Trio Arena. It will also take on Czechia on April 26, Switzerland on April 28, and Kazakhstan on April 30 to round out the preliminary round before the tournament wraps up with the bronze and gold medal games on May 5 at Metro Arena.

Since 2002, Canada has won four gold medals at the IIHF U18 World Championship (2003, 2008, 2013, 2021), in addition to one silver (2005) and four bronze (2012, 2014, 2015, 2023).