Red Wings Keeping Jeff Blashill As Coach
Jeff Blashill, who began the current renaissance of WMU Hockey, will stay as head coach of the Detroit Red Wings, General Manager Ken Holland announced today.
After three decades of making the playoffs, the Red Wings have reached the point where they need to rebuild. Red Wings owner Christopher Illich extended GM Holland's contract Monday allowing Holland to begin the rebuilding process. and today Holland announced Blashill's future during exit interviews at Little Caesars Arena.
The Detroit Free-Press reports, while announcing Blashill's return, Holland sounded less positive about the futures of his assistants. Doug Houda, Jeff Salajko and John Torchetti. Houda has a year left on his contract, but Salajko's and Torchetti's deals are up. Torchetti does have head coaching experience.
The Red Wings were 30-39-13, racked up 73 pts. this season, their worst (not including labor affected seasons) since 1989-90, the last year prior to last season when the Red Wings missed the playoffs. A combination of age, and salary cap issues along with simply bad drafting and personnel decisions have put the Red Wings in the position they are in currently. While Holland oversaw this stretch, Illich must believe he deserves a chance to right the ship, as he was the architect of four Stanley Cup champion teams in Detroit.
The first step in the rebuilding process is the NHL Lottery, which is April 28th and will determine where the Red Wings will selected in June's player draft. Free agency begins on July 1st.