Babcock Has Moved On.

And, now, so must we.

It’s Friday. It’s been an exhaustingly long week. Mostly due to work but the ordeal of anxiously waiting for Babcock to do what it seemed like he was always going to do, leave Detroit for a different opportunity…..and a metric crap ton of money. Somehow this Babcock thing has completely overshadowed the end of the second round of the playoffs, the fun World Championships that were going on and the start of the Conference Finals in the NHL. Wednesday was Babcock’s self-imposed decision day and he kept it, making the shocking/not so shocking decision to leave Detroit for….Toronto. The Toronto part was the shocking bit as it seemed everything he said prior to his decision pointed away from Toronto as a destination.

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It’s Over. The Babcock Circus is Over…..For Now

Welp guys, the unthinkable happened. For two years, now, the Toronto media has guaranteed that Babcock would coach the Maple Leafs when his contract with Detroit was over. Aaaaaaaaand here we all are….

Babcock to Toronto 1(7) Twitter 2015-05-20 13-10-10

TSN confirms that Mike Babcock is the new head coach of the Toronto Maple Leafs. I wonder how mu…

Babcock to Toronto 2(10) Twitter 2015-05-20 13-11-24

WOAH. 50 million over 8 years. Around 8 million a season. That blows the next highest paid coach out of the water by SIX (6) million dollars. I don’t understand! This is an initial reaction post and I’ll post my full thoughts later. But OH MAN. See ya, Mike. Good Luck!

Edit: The 8 million a season is for the first half of his contract. It’ll be reduced after that.

Babcock MADNESS!

Quick update from the lunch table of a Mediterranean restaurant!

Aaron Ward tweeted that Buffalo is out of the Mike Babcock sweepstakes and that Babs has ruled out the Wings. That leaves Toronto.

It was also reported that the MLSE (Toronto ownership group) jet was scheduled to fly to Detroit and leave 3 minutes later. So it looks like they’re coming to pick up their new prize and return to their dumpster fire.

 

More probably soon.

BABCOCK COACH WATCH UPDATE!

That was all caps but I promise I wasn’t yell….ok I was totally yelling.

 

Anyway. Here’s a quick update from Dreger on what’s going on with Mike Babcock’s coaching situation.

(16) Twitter 2015-05-20 10-18-59

So Mike is just sitting back with the Wings’ final offer while Toronto and Buffalo punch each other in the face. SWEET!

Whatever happens here, I’m pretty confident that Mike won’t be back in the Motor City next year.

What is going on with Mike Babcock?

Well, that’s a bit of a loaded question and I kind of feel like an ass writing this two days after his father passed away and the day of his father’s funeral. BUT! I’ve had a lot of thoughts about the “best coach in the NHL” which were further exacerbated by the hilarity that was the game last night. So we’ll dive right in and discuss my thoughts on Mr. Babcock

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Swede-Go-Round

I’m not sure if this sounds like the best ride ever, given the approximate beauty of most Swedish women, or the most horrifying ride ever because: Johan Franzen. There’s also a concussion joke in there somewhere I’m sure. But that’s why we are here today, concussions. They’re the worst.

The good news? Joakim Andersson was activated off of IR and is available for tonight’s game. The bad news? Johan Franzen has been placed back on IR because his post-concussion symptoms showed back up after one game. The double-whammy bad news? Because of this we now have another spot open and Cleary will again be in the lineup. I don’t like this. We need Franzen back and we need Cleary out of the line-up.

This is the only change for tonight, as of right now. You have Andersson taking Franzen’s spot on the first line at the moment so the lines look like this:

Nyquist-Andersson-Abdelkader

Tatar-Sheahan-Jurco

Cleary-Helm-Alfredsson

Miller-Glendening-Eaves

Defense is the same.

 

I’ll update this as more info becomes available.

Back At It

We need you guys back....pretty please?

We need you guys back….pretty please?

This weekend was busy and I was just now able to catch up on the game against Florida. It’s a little frustrating to see the whole “blow a two goal lead late in a game especially against Florida” thing pop back up but at the end of a five game home-stand against some really good teams, you had to expect a little bit of a let down. The encouraging thing about it was that Detroit was in the lead for a large portion of the game and the second period and most of the third was magnificent. Let’s jump in it!

Guys like Bertuzzi (pictured) and Cleary have been healthy scratches in favor of the "kids"

Guys like Bertuzzi (pictured) and Cleary have been healthy scratches in favor of the “kids”

Babcock, as well as pretty much everyone who has watched the Wings play the last few weeks, absolutely loves the way the “kid” line has been playing. Sheahan, Jurco and Tatar have developed quite a good bit of chemistry and are playing very well every single game. Sheahan has proven that he belongs in the NHL and has been a two way force for much of his time up. Tatar is really showing what he can do. Good Lord is this kid fun to watch. He’s like a freakin’ bulldog out there, absolutely nasty on the puck and I really don’t think I’ve seen him take a shift off all year. Jurco shows flashes of brilliance but isn’t quite “there”. However, he’s played a very steady game and, while still learning, is proving his value to this club presently, not down the line. He’s played very physical and just needs to learn how to translate his offensive genius to this level of play. It’s there, just waiting to be released. These kids, along with Luke Glendening playing very steadily, have played so well that it’s forced Babcock to sit guys like Bertuzzi and Cleary (who was actually back in the Florida game because of Zetterberg being a late scratch.) It will be interesting to see what the team does here in the next few days with its roster. Bertuzzi and Cleary both have NTCs and are unlikely to waive them to be moved, but Babcock has made it clear that he wants to play the best players and right now, that means Tatar, Sheahan and Jurco > Bertuzzi, Cleary, Samuelsson.

Quick update on injuries and transactions:

Still no update on Datsyuk but you have to figure he’s getting closer and closer. Hopefully he’ll be back in the next game or so. Andersson could be ready on Tuesday in Philadelphia, which could force Holland’s hand early on making some roster moves.

Goalie Petr Mrazek was sent back to Grand Rapids as Detroit activated Jimmy Howard from IR who is ready to start or back up in Philly. Mrazek will get good starting time in Grand Rapids as the kid has proven he’s capable of being an NHL goalie and looks set to be the back up next year.

League News:

Gustav Nyquist was named the NHL’s second star this week, scoring 6 points (4-2-6) in 4 games with Detroit going 2-1-1 over that span.

I don't....I don't understand what's happening here.

I don’t….I don’t understand what’s happening here.