• Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0
cupforwings

Babcock's Take

Rate this topic

29 posts in this topic

Babcock set to show Wings still among NHL's elite

TRAVERSE CITY, Mich. -- Detroit Red Wings coach Mike Babcock never is at a loss for words, but he somehow managed to sum up his thoughts on the upcoming season to just two.

"We're back."

That was his message to Red Wings fans and the rest of the NHL. The reason for Babcock's optimism are both the new and familiar faces in and around the Red Wings' dressing room these days.

The veteran coach recently took the time to sit down with NHL.com at the Traverse City NHL Prospects Tournament to discuss the 2010-11 season.

NHL.COM: What players stood out in your eyes at this year's Prospects tournament?

"He's still thinking like a player, but seven years from now he's not going to be thinking like a player. Look at (Lightning GM Steve) Yzerman now, he's management. I'm a big believer in surrounding yourself with the best people and asking them questions. In the end, you have to make your decisions. He'll be a wealth of knowledge for us, if we tap that wealth."

"The Joakim Andersson kid is strong and looks to be a safe player down the road. Tomas Tatar obviously has some real skill -- he reminds me of Jiri Hudler a little bit. He anticipates and makes plays, hangs on to the puck well. (Brendan) Smith is a high-end skill guy. His game has to evolve without the puck a little bit, but I like how powerful he is and how he skates. He sees and moves the puck pretty well. (Landon) Ferraro has a chance as well ... looks like he has some skill level there. I was also impressed with the size of (Brian) Lashoff (6-foot-3, 207 pounds), and I like goalie (Thomas) McCollum. So there's six kids and, when you think about it, it's hard to have six kids that you're already really excited about within the organization. There might be others, too, but those are the ones that popped out at me."

NHL.COM: Do you feel it's inspiring to a young goalie like Thomas McCollum to see the success Jimmy Howard achieved in the minors?

BABCOCK: "I think it's real. Look, this is a man's league and it isn't easy at all. It's hard on everyone. A classic example is goalie (Steve) Mason in Columbus. In my opinion, Mason is a star. He was a star his first year and (coach Ken Hitchcock) did a great job with the team. But Mason struggles his second year and Hitch isn't the coach anymore. Mason will be back this year, but that's how hard it is to be good in the league. I know McCollum struggled a bit in the AHL, but that's good. You have to learn to fight through tough times; that's all a part of it. McCollum has a great work ethic and fought hard all summer (training with goalie coach Jim Bedard)."

NHL.COM: What did Jimmy Howard learn from last season?

BABCOCK: "Obviously he thinks he's good and he was good. Now he has to be good this year and if he can put 18 good seasons together in a row, then you're like (Chris Osgood) ... the real ones. The real ones do it year after year and the message, just like in life, is really clear. Your ups have to be longer than your downs. That doesn't mean there won't be any downs, but you can let those things weigh heavy on you or you can have momentary downs and move on with it."

NHL.COM: What does it mean having Jiri Hudler back in a Red Wings jersey?

BABCOCK: "It means 70 points. It means your second power-play unit is as good as your first power-play unit, maybe better. (Dan) Cleary, (Mike) Modano and Huds will be on the same line to start. He's a good hockey player and knows how to play this game. It's great to have him back. He made a decision in his career (to spend last season in the KHL), but there's lots of respect. Did I think it was the right decision? No, but it was right for him. The great thing about decisions is when you make them, you move on. He's back now and we're thrilled. He doesn't have to prove anything to me; I know he can play."

NHL.COM: What will Mike Modano bring to the Red Wings?

BABCOCK: "He's been a good player for a long time. (Pavel Datsyuk) will center Z (Henrik Zetterberg) and on the right side I have Homer (Tomas Holmstrom), Bert (Todd Bertuzzi) and (Dan) Cleary. I don't know what line they're playing on, but I know I got Z with Pavel, (Johan) Franzen with Fil (Valtteri Filppula) and Hudler with Modano. So he's going to play with good players. If I'm the other team, my first defensive pair is playing against Pavel, the second against Fil and a third against Modano -- that's a heck of a third line. He can really skate and I like the fact it's a change for him. Change is exciting. I think we should all change our professions every 10 years. When you go to a new place, you're fired up, a little bit nervous and there's momentary doubt. Those things will help him and we think he still has a lot of hockey left in him. He's going to be happy being a Red Wing. He's going to like getting the puck on his tape from good players and he'll play on our second power-play unit."

NHL.COM: What makes Detroit General Manager Ken Holland so good at what he does?

BABCOCK: "He's a passionate guy who loves hockey. He's 24/7, is a great numbers guy and very smart. He's got a philosophy and he doesn't deviate. I talk all the time about the 'success circle.' What that means is, you practice, then you execute. When you execute, you become reinforced and reinforcement leads to passion because you like it and it starts over again. When reinforced, your expectations get a little bit higher. So now you expect more success with the circle. Time after time, Ken's had success and has been steady on the rudder and patient and he knows what he's doing is right. You don't deviate as quickly as maybe someone who hasn't had the success. His knowledge and ability to treat people the right way really make him a fun person to be around. There are lots of things that go into it, but, to me, he's a guy who's been in the business forever and he's passionate about doing it and working hard every day."

NHL.COM: Are you excited to have Chris Chelios aboard?

BABCOCK: "We're thrilled. I like having a guy who's an ultimate competitor, who just left playing. I was asking Cheli a bunch of questions recently while talking to some minor-league coaches and we were discussing practice. What does a player like? How long can the meeting be with a player? What's the best way to teach this? He's still thinking like a player, but seven years from now he's not going to be thinking like a player. Look at (Lightning GM Steve) Yzerman now, he's management. I'm a big believer in surrounding yourself with the best people and asking them questions. In the end, you have to make your decisions. He'll be a wealth of knowledge for us, if we tap that wealth. He just has to figure out his job. He's got to find his job, find his passion and figure out where he fits in. Is it helping (Brendan) Smith get better or working with (defenseman Jakub Kindl)? Is it helping coaches on the power play or penalty kill? Is it simply coming to me and asking, 'Hey, why are you not playing that guy?' I'm all ears."

Edited by cupforwings
Jesusberg, pucktividi, Nev and 2 others like this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hes a great coach and does the subtle and not so subtle things to inspire, look at what he said in the paragraph about Jimmy "if he can put 18 good seasons together in a row, then you're like (Chris Osgood) ... the real ones." hes inspiring and challenging Jimmy to play at his top level, while also throwing something in to show his respect and belief in Ozzy. The other thing that stood out to me was his comment about Modano "He's going to like getting the puck on his tape from good players" I'm pumped for the season

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

If you're going to copy and paste the whole article (which is discouraged on this board)... think you could take 10 seconds to make it readable? blink.gif

Edited by CaliWingsNut
heretic69 likes this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

If you're going to copy and paste the whole article (which is discouraged on this board)... think you could take 10 seconds to make it readable? blink.gif

It's readable... you just gotta bounce around a bunch to do it. :)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
NHL.COM: What players stood out in your eyes at this year's Prospects tournament?

"He's still thinking like a player, but seven years from now he's not going to be thinking like a player. Look at (Lightning GM Steve) Yzerman now, he's management. I'm a big believer in surrounding yourself with the best people and asking them questions. In the end, you have to make your decisions. He'll be a wealth of knowledge for us, if we tap that wealth."

is this referring to chelios?

oh, yes, i see that it is.

Edited by drumshanbo

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

If you're going to copy and paste the whole article (which is discouraged on this board)... think you could take 10 seconds to make it readable? blink.gif

Seriously? There was one thing out of place. Those types of comments are discouraged on this board.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Seriously? There was one thing out of place. Those types of comments are discouraged on this board.

I'm glad you removed the text ad, and cleaned up the chelios question part (dunno how this is one thing, but regardless...). Thanks!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We very often take Mike for granted. He may very well be the best coach in the league.

55fan likes this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Speak for yourself pal. :)

Some may question "best coach in the league" :thumbup:.I definitely believe Holland has put the best coach for the organization, system and talent behind the bench. IMO, makes him the best in the league by default!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Can I start calling him Shaft?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SWawEndwdM8

Who's the red haired boss;

who wins and wins without all the gloss?

(BABS!)

You're damn right.

Whooo is the mann

that works harder than the other mannn?

(BABS!)

Can ya dig it?

Who's the cat with the piercing stare

it'll make you soil your underwear...

(BABS!)

...Well?

You see this cat Babs is one fuuunnn sponge-

(Shut your mouth!)

But I'm talkin' about Babs.

(Then we can dig it.)

He's a Saskatoon mannn

and no one understands him but his woman...

(Mike Babs!)

F2B&G and seeinred like this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We very often take Mike for granted. He may very well be the best coach in the league.

May very well? He damn well is for certain the best coach in the league.

As the interview......dayum, does he sound pumped or what? The man is raring to go :siren:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Some may question "best coach in the league" :thumbup:.I definitely believe Holland has put the best coach for the organization, system and talent behind the bench. IMO, makes him the best in the league by default!

I can't think of anyone better. The Wings have had terrible adversity the past few years and yet maintain their status at the top of the league. He's routinely outcoached teams he plays against and held the team together. Sure, there are other fantastic coaches in the league, but none match up to Babcock.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!


Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.


Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0