Report: Babcock and Red Wings close to a long-term deal

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Mike Babcock won’t be testing the open market after all.

According to a report in The Windsor Star, Babcock and the Red Wings are nearing a deal, which will keep the 51-year-old behind Detroit bench long-term.

Bob Duff reports the deal could happen as early as this month and will make Babcock the league’s highest paid coach.

The Ontario native is in his 10th season with the Wings guiding Detroit to nine straight playoff appearances including a Stanley Cup victory in 2008.

Last season Babcock surpassed Scotty Bowman (410) and Jack Adams (415) to become the winningest coach in franchise history. On Dec. 6 he notched his 500th career win.

In total Babcock has a 432-204-97 record as head coach of the Detroit Red Wings.

Prior to joining the Red Wings, Babcock spent two seasons behind the bench in Anaheim coaching the Ducks to the 2003 Stanley Cup final.