Leafs land Babcock with reported 8-year deal, estimated at $50 million


Per TSN’s Darren Dreger, the Toronto Maple Leafs have their man — Mike Babcock has reportedly agreed to a eight-year deal worth “around” $50 million.

The deal will make Babcock the NHL’s highest-paid coach (no kidding), with an average annual value of roughly $6.25 million (TSN’s Bob McKenzie reports Babcock’s salary in the first three years could be as high as $8 million annually.)


Specific contractual details have yet to be released but, regardless, the move is a gargantuan one in Toronto president Brendan Shanahan’s massive rebuild, which began last month with a wholesale housecleaning that included firing GM Dave Nonis, head coach Peter Horachek, director of pro scouting Steve Kasper and director of player development Jim Hughes.

Shanahan later fired a large portion of the club’s scouting department and, yesterday, assistant GM Kyle Dubas announced a significant shakeup of the AHL Marlies coaching staff.

As for Babcock, the move to Toronto officially ends his 10-year stint with Detroit, during which he racked up 458 wins and a Stanley Cup. The move also reunites him with Shanahan, his former Red Wings player — Shanny scored 40 goals in his lone year under Babcock in 2005-06 — and returns Babcock to the province of Ontario, where he was born.

UPDATE: Toronto has made it official…

Per the club’s release, Babcock and Shanahan will conduct an introductory presser on Thursday at 11 a.m. ET.

Here’s the latest info on compensation headed Detroit’s way…