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Regner: Next year could be Babcock's last

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He could pretty much go to any team he wants. The guy obviously doesn't want to coach forever, and our team is far far from being a playoff caliber team, so I don't blame him one bit for seeking greener pastures. I actually think given a team like the Sharks, Tampa Bay, or even the Flyers, he could take all of them to the next level.

Do you mean far far from being a cup contender? You realize we did make the playoffs last year, we are not the Buffalo Sabres.

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Do you mean far far from being a cup contender? You realize we did make the playoffs last year, we are not the Buffalo Sabres.

We made it, but that doesn't make us playoff caliber. At no point, besides maybe game 1, did it look like we had a chance in that series.

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We made it, but that doesn't make us playoff caliber. At no point, besides maybe game 1, did it look like we had a chance in that series.

I think making the playoffs is the definition of playoff caliber. It sounds like you are talking about being a Stanley Cup contender. I'm not denying our poor performance in the first round last year. Though I think that was more so due to match-up then anything. I don't see us performing like that against Pittsburgh. Not saying we win, but we definitely do better.

Either way, this is all semantics, we are a playoff caliber team.

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Based on what? Both teams had approximately the same regular season records. Relative to the rest of the NHL during their time periods, they were quite similar. I do agree that the current Wings squad is a 'step' down from some of the veteran-filled rosters of years past and I'm interested to see what Babs can do with it. Last year was the first time he's ever had success with a 'young' team at the NHL level. That was the most rookies he's employed in a season and the most games by first-year players. From what I've read, that's a big reason they brought in Tony Granato as an assistant, to work more with the younger guys.

True, but neither did the rest of the NHL at that time. The bigger difference was that Bowman's teams were on an upward trajectory while Babcock's have been in decline. Babcock took over a veteran team and eight years later the 'kids' from that team are older and they haven't supplemented with as much veteran talent.

The system has to work as a whole, in my opinion. Babs is great with veteran teams (his early Wings squads, Team Canada, even some of his successful Chiefs teams during his WHL days were 'veteran' by comparison). If the Wings are going to make a youth movement, can Babcock adapt? Does he want to?

Babs did just fine coaching junior teams before going to the nhl. He's actually said several times last year that he's really enjoying working with the young kids, and that it's more exciting coaching a team that's struggling

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I think making the playoffs is the definition of playoff caliber. It sounds like you are talking about being a Stanley Cup contender. I'm not denying our poor performance in the first round last year. Though I think that was more so due to match-up then anything. I don't see us performing like that against Pittsburgh. Not saying we win, but we definitely do better.

Either way, this is all semantics, we are a playoff caliber team.

If we are a playoff caliber team, Babcock should be able to elevate us to being a Stanley Cup contender - top coach plus playoff-caliber team should at least be in that discussion, right? If Babcock can only squeak us into the playoffs, the roster isn't playoff caliber. A playoff caliber team, in my mind, controls their own destiny and doesn't need a couple 'breaks' or puck bounces to eek into the 6-7-8 spot. Depending on which season preview you read, we're not even picked to finish that well...

Babs did just fine coaching junior teams before going to the nhl. He's actually said several times last year that he's really enjoying working with the young kids, and that it's more exciting coaching a team that's struggling

I can't imagine an NHL coach under contract saying much different than what Babs does? I mean, he can't really tell the media that his job stinks and expect to keep it for very long (ask Torts). And I won't argue over the 'value' of juniors, but 'just fine' isn't how I'd look at Babs junior coaching career there. He did finish 1st a couple of times with Spokane, but never won an WHL championship or a Memorial Cup and while a couple kids may have gotten drafted, he didn't develop anyone into an NHLer (maybe you could credit him with Ryan Smythe from his days in Moose Jaw?). He can 'say' he likes working with the kids, but his performance says he's better and more comfortable working with veterans.

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If we are a playoff caliber team, Babcock should be able to elevate us to being a Stanley Cup contender - top coach plus playoff-caliber team should at least be in that discussion, right? If Babcock can only squeak us into the playoffs, the roster isn't playoff caliber. A playoff caliber team, in my mind, controls their own destiny and doesn't need a couple 'breaks' or puck bounces to eek into the 6-7-8 spot. Depending on which season preview you read, we're not even picked to finish that well...

You just have unique definitions of that term. For most playoff caliber would mean able to make the playoffs and making the playoff would be proof of that. You seem to discount the lower seeds as playoff caliber because they usually don't "control there own destiny." That's going to be an uphill battle against common sense, I think.

It is possible that we wouldn't have made the playoffs with a different coach, but it's also possible we would have finished higher without our injury woes. Both are what ifs - I think it's better just to deal with what did happen and we did make the playoffs. Also, I have not come across a commentator who's predicting we won't this year with the same roster.

I also disagree your rhetorical question, "top coach plus playoff-caliber team should at least be in that discussion, right?." I've never heard anyone argue that a lower seeded playoff team was a contender because of their coaching - it's always that the team underperformed during the season or they made some big deadline aquistions.

Edited by PavelValerievichDatsyuk
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Say what you want about the way Holland negotiates contracts, but I think he is right in trying to get a "fair" contract. That goes for players and coaches. I'm quite okay with Holland not overpaying on free agents and trying to sign his own players and coaches to reasonable deals. I wish more GM's across the league would have this same mentality. If that were the case, we probably wouldn't even know of the term "lock-out"...

I'm well aware that the coaches salaries are not included in a teams salary cap but it can still effect the state of the league. So, Babcock gets paid $5M next season, is anyone so naïve to think that all other coaches negotiating new contracts won't demand a little (lot) more. Even though they may not be on the same level as Babs in terms of accomplishments, I don't think he is twice as good as every other coach in the league. What happens when coaches such as Darryl Sutter, Joel Quenneville, Claude Julien, Ken Hitchcock (who in my opinion are pretty darn close to Babcock) need a new deal? They also get double their previous contract, based on Babcock's new contract, and it just keeps escalating.

Same goes for free agent players, and that's why so many players in the league today are waaaay overpaid. There is a bidding war for mediocre players every single year and I love that Holland doesn't like to overpay and wants to get a "fair" contract. Ken Holland will never be the cause of an NHL lock-out and for that I appreciate what he is trying to do.

No man (player or coach) should be paid the sums of money these guys are making but that's another topic...

Holland tried signing Matt Niskanen to a huge contract. Same with Dan Boyle for fewer years. Holland was involved in the bidding wars this past summer and lost. It wasn't like he had this plan to not participate because the prices were too high. You can't really praise him for being prudent in free agency when in reality, he is trying and the players just aren't coming to Detroit and he doesn't know why. Holland still overpays for mediocre players anyways: see Quincey, Samuelsson, Legwand recently.

Edited by GoWings1905

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I think making the playoffs is the definition of playoff caliber. It sounds like you are talking about being a Stanley Cup contender. I'm not denying our poor performance in the first round last year. Though I think that was more so due to match-up then anything. I don't see us performing like that against Pittsburgh. Not saying we win, but we definitely do better.

Either way, this is all semantics, we are a playoff caliber team.

We are absolutely a playoff-caliber team with Datsyuk and Zetterberg still around. Even with age and injuries, those two guys are still are remarkable players, and even in their absence last year due to injury, I almost feel as if it's reasonable to say that the hole they left was so large that it had much to do with many of the younger guys rising up and playing above a level that one would typically expect of them. When you still have a core of Dats and Z, you should be making the playoffs. I've said it for years, and I'm still saying it now, even in light of last season.

But...

We are not contenders, and despite what many like to say about how anything is possible if you just get in, it's simply not something substantial enough to be able to bank on. I'm not saying it's entirely untrue, but there is more of a divide between the contenders and some of the teams that squeak in than people realize. And oftentimes, some of the 7th-8th seeds that squeak in and go the distance were better teams than their regular season records showed, and they proved that in the playoffs. We haven't come close to proving that, and one could say last season, quite the opposite was proven.

Many Detroit fans were deluded by how close we came to beating Chicago a couple years back. The reality of that series was Chicago wasn't even close to being on their game and their stars weren't rising up to the playoff challenge as the series started. We took advantage of it early on, and then Chicago came back against significant odds and proved once again why they've won two Cups in the last five years. We certainly didn't make it easy for them, even in the final three games, but they found a way to crawl out of the hole and win, and they went on to win the Cup.

Last year, Boston manhandled us and proved that our kids weren't ready to answer the playoff bell. We just looked weaker and weaker as that series went on. Are we going to be a better team this year? Maybe our kids will improve, or maybe they'll still need more time to be ready. Dats and Z might be healthier, but any way you shake it, they're getting older, so it's tough to say how much of an impact they'll have on the scoresheet. Our defense isn't likely to be any better unless a kid comes up and overachieves. And while my money is on Howard bouncing back strong, he can't do it alone.

I think we'll squeak into the playoffs, but we're not real close to being able to contend for the Cup right now. We won't be until something more dramatic happens to improve the defense in particular, and until our kids mature to a point where they aren't shutdown in the playoffs, or perhaps in general when having to play a lesser role on a less-injured team.

That said though, I don't think that's why Babcock would leave. I do think he enjoys working with the kids, and I don't think money is going to be an issue that affects the decision. I could see him wanting to move on for the sake of new challenges and experiences, and as much as I'd hate to see it, from his perspective, I could understand why he might want to go to a team like Pittsburgh. It's an opportunity that you aren't going to get very often. I don't know if he'd actually do it, and I don't know that he wants to leave, but I do think he's likely more frustrated with the way this team's been run than he's let on lately, and I think he is likely as tired of getting no help from the GM as any of us. He's made enough comments suggesting so in the press to infer at the very least that he isn't thrilled by all that hasn't happened in the last 4-5 years. I'm not saying it's an extreme situation, but I have no doubt that it's something that bothers him because he's been frustrated enough to say so numerous times.

You add everything up, and I could see Babcock going to another team after this season and I could understand why. I hope it doesn't come to that because I think he's a great coach, but it'd be hard to fault him.

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Holland and the Wings helped drive up salaries before the cap. They were pioneers in the front loaded deals with low salary years at the end to lower the hit. Both factors leading to lockouts.

If the Wings are relatively healthy they do more than squeak into the playoffs. They did that with most of their good forwards missing a third of the season or more.

I think Babcock will play out the season without a deal and see how far they make it and how they look going forward before making a decision.

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Babcock is smart, not dumb. As a smart man he knows what he's going to get from the Wings/Holland. That's a playoff chance each and every year. Some better than others. He likes his manager and the system that caters to him. By leaving he runs a huge risk. He walks into a system that may be hot now, but might not be hot tmrw or in 3 years. He might have to deal with big headed players he doesn't like. Big headed managers he doesn't like. Other problems unbeknownst to him.

The Wings offer a very stable system, where he knows he's gonna good young talent every year, even if the trade pipelines don't workout.

Doubt he leaves. That's a coaching paradise. Crosby may be good, But he has only one cup bc there has been a disaster of problems around him. If I'm babcock I don't want to handcuff myself to that system. I also want my legacy to be reconized because I was awesome. Not because Crosby and Malkin were, aka GlenSather

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Personally I believe Babcock is the type of guy who badly wants to win every year and he absolutely hates the stand still. Even after the back to back losses against the Sharks or against the predators he pointed out the record and said :"we are not going in the right direction here "and this was a few years ago - seems like forever - when the wings still had Lidstrom plus a fairly young Z... Babs saw the decline coming hence why he was so pissed that the wings missed out on Burns. If Mario offers him equal money - which the pens for sure will - he gets to coach two superstars in their prime, a guaranteed playoff berth every year and the chance to compete for Lord Stanley.. This opportunity doesn't come very often and I wouldn't hold it against him if he grabs it.

Another example are the Blues if Hitchcock doesn't get the job done this season he will be sacked and Babcock could coach one of the toughest teams in the league with superstars like Backes, Pietrangelo (23 years!) , Statsny some of them not even in their prime. It might be a tough pull to swallow as a wings fan but teams like the mentioned ones are offering a much better mid term perspective.

At some point Babcock will be fed up with getting no help while teams like the Bolts and Stars are making things happen. Teams would probably start a bidding war for his services and let's be honest some top teams have more to offer in terms of superstar quality and ufa attraction. Whatever he decides to do he is the best coach in ice hockey and had nothing left to prove.

Edited by frankgrimes

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If we are a playoff caliber team, Babcock should be able to elevate us to being a Stanley Cup contender - top coach plus playoff-caliber team should at least be in that discussion, right? If Babcock can only squeak us into the playoffs, the roster isn't playoff caliber. A playoff caliber team, in my mind, controls their own destiny and doesn't need a couple 'breaks' or puck bounces to eek into the 6-7-8 spot. Depending on which season preview you read, we're not even picked to finish that well...

I can't imagine an NHL coach under contract saying much different than what Babs does? I mean, he can't really tell the media that his job stinks and expect to keep it for very long (ask Torts). And I won't argue over the 'value' of juniors, but 'just fine' isn't how I'd look at Babs junior coaching career there. He did finish 1st a couple of times with Spokane, but never won an WHL championship or a Memorial Cup and while a couple kids may have gotten drafted, he didn't develop anyone into an NHLer (maybe you could credit him with Ryan Smythe from his days in Moose Jaw?). He can 'say' he likes working with the kids, but his performance says he's better and more comfortable working with veterans.

Your coaching staff is a part of your "team". When I say we are a playoff caliber "team", I am referring to players and coaches. The topic wasn't if we were a playoff caliber roster.

If the conversation is are we a playoff contending roster, I still say yes IF we are healthy. Also, people forget how much parity there is in the NHL 2014, look at Colorado, they went from 15th seed to 2nd seed in one year without really many roster changes. Having a bunch of young kids all start to gel and play at the next level at the same time can change everything. I have faith in our kids, its too bad so many fans do not. But hey.....hopefully they prove people wrong, actions speak louder then words.

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Babcock is smart, not dumb. As a smart man he knows what he's going to get from the Wings/Holland. That's a playoff chance each and every year. Some better than others. He likes his manager and the system that caters to him. By leaving he runs a huge risk. He walks into a system that may be hot now, but might not be hot tmrw or in 3 years. He might have to deal with big headed players he doesn't like. Big headed managers he doesn't like. Other problems unbeknownst to him.

The Wings offer a very stable system, where he knows he's gonna good young talent every year, even if the trade pipelines don't workout.

Doubt he leaves. That's a coaching paradise. Crosby may be good, But he has only one cup bc there has been a disaster of problems around him. If I'm babcock I don't want to handcuff myself to that system. I also want my legacy to be reconized because I was awesome. Not because Crosby and Malkin were, aka GlenSather

I get what you're saying. I don't entirely disagree, but I think you could say a bit or more of what you're saying about the Wings when Babcock joined us. We were a strong team, a legitimate contender, but we had our fair share of minor issues to resolve before we were ready to win the Cup a few years later. And we were hot for awhile, and I don't think it's reasonable to suggest we're so hot now. We're not terrible, we've kept making the playoffs, but two years in a row, it was hardly a given, and it's not going to get easier as Dats and Z age. I like our kids, but unless Mantha really lives up to the hype, we don't have anyone in the pipeline that is going to be able to fill those holes, and we've seen how well Holland does filling holes in free agency. It is very, very hard to fill those big holes, now more than ever, and it's likely only to happen through the draft, and for that to happen for us, we're going to have to be a whole lot more "not hot" first...

And if Babcock went anywhere, he'd be going to a team with a system that would immediately begin to cater to him. Why else do you go after the top coach in the league, especially one like Babcock? Everyone knows the guy has his system and his ways. I don't think there's a chance he moves unless he has a lot of sway in how the team is run, and I think anyone who'd seriously pursue him and stand a chance of getting him knows this, is fine with it, and in fact very much wants it. Again, why else do you pursue a coach like Babcock?

Generally though, I do think he likes it here, and I think he'd likely prefer to stay here. I want to think that at least. And I honestly do think he'll stick it out past this contract at least for another year or two. But if he leaves, there's enough reasons and enough oddities that I wouldn't be surprised, but I'd still be incredibly disappointed.

Your coaching staff is a part of your "team". When I say we are a playoff caliber "team", I am referring to players and coaches. The topic wasn't if we were a playoff caliber roster.

If the conversation is are we a playoff contending roster, I still say yes IF we are healthy. Also, people forget how much parity there is in the NHL 2014, look at Colorado, they went from 15th seed to 2nd seed in one year without really many roster changes. Having a bunch of young kids all start to gel and play at the next level at the same time can change everything. I have faith in our kids, its too bad so many fans do not. But hey.....hopefully they prove people wrong, actions speak louder then words.

I have faith that half of them will be NHLers still in a couple of years. That faith isn't based on pessimism, just basic logic. How many players just on this team have we seen have promising starts only to sputter and disappear? It's the nature of the game. I certainly am hoping for the best and clearly we have a lot of promising players, but just as teams and players can rise up and go from bad to great almost overnight, the opposite happens as well, and unfortunately, it has a tendency of being a more normal occurrence.

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I personally think this is babcocks last year in detroit ... I'd be shocked to see him back

Same here I've just listened to Blashill and it's unreal the guy sounds 100 % like Babcock, even his phrasing is the same amazing.

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Here is an article about the situation:

http://www.clickondetroit.com/sports/mike-babcock-on-detroit-i-want-to-be-here/28140818

Quote from Babcock

"I think they want me to be here. I want to be here. We'll find a way to work something out," said Babcock. "Right now, you might find this hard to believe, we have other things to worry about besides Mike Babcock."

The guy wants to be here, if he didn't he would simply say he doesn't want to discuss the situation.

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Here is an article about the situation:

http://www.clickondetroit.com/sports/mike-babcock-on-detroit-i-want-to-be-here/28140818

Quote from Babcock

"I think they want me to be here. I want to be here. We'll find a way to work something out," said Babcock. "Right now, you might find this hard to believe, we have other things to worry about besides Mike Babcock."

The guy wants to be here, if he didn't he would simply say he doesn't want to discuss the situation.

NO. He's leaving. We suck and he's leaving.

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I think this year and how successful we are, season wise and in the playoffs, will determine what Babs will do

Mantha injury really doesn't help matters as I think Babs was hoping to roll out more complete lines

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I think this year and how successful we are, season wise and in the playoffs, will determine what Babs will do

Mantha injury really doesn't help matters as I think Babs was hoping to roll out more complete lines

The injury is 6-8 weeks. Its not like he'll be out all season. He may miss the first two weeks of the regular season and then start in grand rapids, if he is dominating he'll get a trial run in the nhl.

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I'm already sooooooo sick of this story. Until he signs a contract this is going to be one long, speculative, pain in the ass. Not because of Holland. Not because of Babcock. Because of media goobers who see the value of rabble rousing.

Prepare yourselves LGW, this will get worse before it gets better.

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I'm already sooooooo sick of this story. Until he signs a contract this is going to be one long, speculative, pain in the ass. Not because of Holland. Not because of Babcock. Because of media goobers who see the value of rabble rousing.

Prepare yourselves LGW, this will get worse before it gets better.

This story will be over come october, Babs already said he will not be talking about it by then and just go to the next question. I'm very sure Holland will do the exact same thing.

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This story will be over come october, Babs already said he will not be talking about it by then and just go to the next question. I'm very sure Holland will do the exact same thing.

Which will only lead to more media speculation, since nothing was finalized. Which was my point.

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Here is an article about the situation:

http://www.clickondetroit.com/sports/mike-babcock-on-detroit-i-want-to-be-here/28140818

Quote from Babcock

"I think they want me to be here. I want to be here. We'll find a way to work something out," said Babcock. "Right now, you might find this hard to believe, we have other things to worry about besides Mike Babcock."

The guy wants to be here, if he didn't he would simply say he doesn't want to discuss the situation.

Babcock to Toronto. (e5).

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Datsyuk already went back to Russia early now Babcock wants out too

I heard a rumour that babcock was planning to go to russia after his contract was done so he could coach datsyuk and kovalchuck on the same team... he said ебать Детройт сук... which is something bad in russian

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