Jeff Blashill will be back behind the Detroit bench next season.
But he’s about the only one returning from this year’s coaching staff.
Just one week after reports of wholesale changes coming behind the bench, the Red Wings made two noteworthy moves on Monday:
— Jim Bedard, the longtime goalie coach that’s been with the club for the last 18 years, has been told he won’t be brought back.
— Pat Ferschweiler, the first year NHL assistant head coach that came up with Blashill from AHL Grand Rapids, has been reassigned to work out of the press box next season.
“We need change,” general manager Ken Holland said, per MLive. “We’re still trying to figure out exactly how we’re putting the staff together. Jeff felt he wanted to put together a different staff, felt it was time for some change.”
Change is definitely happening though, to be fair, the process was already underway. Prior to the Bedard and Ferschweiler moves, the club lost veteran bench boss Tony Granato, who left his assistant’s post to take the head coaching gig at the University of Wisconsin.
So now, Blashill could be working with an entirely new group for 2016-17.
Who comprises that group remains to be seen.
Holland said he wanted “someone with a lot of experience,” and MLive suggested Marc Crawford, a Stanley Cup-winning coach with 18 years on his resume, as a viable candidate.
Crawford, though, has reportedly already committed to another assistant position, on Guy Boucher’s staff in Ottawa.
In today’s piece, MLive suggested the likes of Todd Richards, Dave Cameron, Paul MacLean, Mike Yeo and Doug Houda as potential additions to Blashill’s staff.
It’s possible the decision could come down to who can best improve the club’s power play. Ferschweiler faced some criticism running the unit this season — though it did finish a respectable 13th in the league, Detroit’s man advantage struggled for long stretches and was horrific in the playoffs, going just 1-for-25.
As for who replaces Bedard as goalie coach, it’s believed Jeff Salajko — who coached Petr Mrazek in AHL Grand Rapids — could be promoted to the parent club.