Author: Cam Tucker

Mike Babcock expects his coaching decision to come by May 20 (Updated)


Mike Babcock is nearing his highly anticipated decision of where he’ll coach next season, and it could come as early as May 20, he said in an interview with TSN’s Darren Dreger that aired Friday.

Will he re-sign as head coach of the Detroit Red Wings, the team he has been behind the bench with for the last 10 years? Or, will he choose to go elsewhere in the National Hockey League?

“Enough time already. Let’s get on with it,” Babcock told Dreger.

“I bet you by the 20th, I’m going to know what I’m doing. This has been an interesting process. I brought this on myself. I’ve learned a ton about myself. I’ve learned a ton about our relationship. I’ve learned a ton about franchises and the NHL and it’s been great. But to say it’s been fun? You know, your head’s spinning.”

Initially, Babcock and Red Wings general manager Ken Holland agreed to a soft deadline of May 25, as per ESPN.

Earlier this month, Babcock was given permission to speak with other teams, and there are four coaching vacancies in the NHL, including in Buffalo, Philadelphia, Toronto and San Jose.

In the interview with Dreger, Babcock confirmed he does have more than one offer on the table.

“I think about … the Red Wings are an Original Six franchise — a special, special thing. I think about the opportunity to win. I think about my family, about my time in Detroit,” said Babcock.

“Is change important to important to invigorate you? I think about lots of things. I’ve done enough thinking. It’s time to make a decision here pretty quick. I’m a big-picture guy but I’m an immediate gratification guy, too, because I like winning.”

A Stanley Cup champ in Detroit and a two-time Olympic champion as the head coach with Team Canada, Babcock didn’t believe money would be the issue when it came to the Red Wings.

Whether it’s in Detroit, or elsewhere in the NHL, Babcock could be paid handsomely, given his accomplishments as a coach in this league and in international hockey.

“I don’t want to give the idea that I don’t want to be paid. I do want to be paid,” he said.

“But what I’m trying to say is, through Ken and my conversations, that’s not going to be an issue in Detroit.”

And so, we continue to wait. But not for much longer.

“My attitude has always been about the Detroit Red Wings. I want people in Detroit because they want to be in Detroit,” said Holland.

“Obviously, if he’s not the best coach in the game, he’s certainly in a small list of the best coaches in the game, and it’s an opportunity for Mike to decide that we are the best fit.”

Blackhawks battling lengthy layoff heading into Western Conference Final


It has been a while since the Chicago Blackhawks last played an actual game — a full week, in fact, as of Thursday.

The ability to rest up after sweeping a team, like Chicago did to Minnesota in the second round, can be beneficiary during the grind of the Stanley Cup playoffs. Players can get away and relax for just a little bit, and those dealing with injuries are afforded a little extra time to heal up.

But when the Blackhawks play the Anaheim Ducks in Game 1 of the Western Conference Final on Sunday, it will be 10 days in between games for Chicago.

That’s a lengthy layoff, and has led Blackhawks head coach Joel Quenneville to turn to battle drills and scrimmages in order to at least try and simulate a game, as per CSN Chicago.

“It’s one of those things you can’t do,” Andrew Shaw told CSN Chicago. “A game is totally different, pace is always faster, more physical. [Do a] couple battle drills, some quick scrimmages to get the pace going, keep the legs fresh.”

With Otters facing elimination, McDavid says he hasn’t played his last game in Erie


The Erie Otters trail the Oshawa Generals 3-1 in the Ontario Hockey League final, with Game 5 in Oshawa on Friday, but Connor McDavid believes the series will extend back to Erie.

McDavid, who is likely to be taken first overall in next month’s NHL Draft, recorded four points in Game 4 on Wednesday, but the Otters lost in overtime and are now facing elimination and the possibility of not qualifying for the 2015 Memorial Cup.

Given that it appears McDavid will make the step to the NHL next season, Wednesday’s loss could’ve been his last game in Erie.

Well, he doesn’t feel that way.

“It’s not my last game here in Erie,” said McDavid, according to video on the Erie Times-News website.

“Obviously the fans were good here (Wednesday) again. They’ve always been the best fans in the league for three years now so I look forward to coming back to them on Sunday.”

He went on to add, according to video from “Obviously being down 3-1 isn’t the position you want to be in, but many teams have done it and we’re going to do it.”

In 19 post-season games this spring, McDavid has 21 goals and 49 points to lead the OHL. He’s been good.

Earlier this week, he became the sixth youngest player in OHL history to win the league’s Player of the Year award.

If there is a Game 6 between the Otters and Generals, it is scheduled for Sunday.