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Mike Babcock says he’s happy in Detroit

May 18, 2014, 11:20 AM EDT

Mike Babcock AP

Each summer there’s a rush for free agency. Next summer’s biggest prize could be Detroit Red Wings coach Mike Babcock.

Babcock and Red Wings GM Ken Holland each have one year remaining on their contracts with the team and while he’s heard all the stories about teams desiring to have him behind their bench, he tells Yahoo! Sports’ Nick Cotsonika he’s happy where he is now. He also understands what the process will be like to re-sign him.

I have a contract for a year; Ken Holland has a contract for a year,” Babcock said. “I assume the sequence of events are, they deal with Ken Holland first, and then they deal with Mike Babcock. But I’m real comfortable, and I mean that, and I’ve said it. I’m on record. I’m comfortable in my situation. It’s not like I need someone to do anything right now. I’m fine because I think our team’s going in the right direction again.”

Babcock added he’s open to “anything” when it comes to discussing an extension. He also added that even if he was fired he wouldn’t look for a new job because his oldest daughter is set to graduate from high school next summer. That’s not to say he won’t want to explore a new opportunity after that, however.

It’s good for Babcock to say all this and cool everyone off that’s kicked around the idea of stealing him away to be their coach. Fans and media in Toronto, Pittsburgh, and anywhere else with a coaching vacancy have kicked around the idea of bringing Babcock in. But a year from now, the rumors and speculation could be at an all-time high.

Related: Babcock says coaching Detroit is ‘pretty hard to beat’

  1. imnotyourbuddyguy - May 18, 2014 at 11:41 AM

    Not going anywhere

  2. smarshall3789 - May 18, 2014 at 12:16 PM

    I hope Illitch and Holland will do whatever it takes to keep him best coach in the game! The only other place I could see him bolting for in Toronto but even then he’s got a sweet gig here no one has ever called for his head he’s loved here and the team isn’t far away from a few more cups

  3. iammrbinky - May 18, 2014 at 12:26 PM

    The best owner in sports has the best GM and Head Coach in the NHL. Mr Illitch will not let Holland or Babcock get away.

    • rbbbaron - May 18, 2014 at 1:01 PM

      Babcock is probably the best coach…I’ll give you that

      • shoobiedoobin - May 19, 2014 at 9:49 AM

        No, he’s right. Best owner in sports, I mean that is crystal clear. The Illitch family takes care of their own and basically make you part of said family. If you get hurt or for some reason can’t play the game anymore, or retire, and want a job they will give you one. If there’s not a job, they’ll create a position. They’ve given the team a cushy plane to fly in, etc etc etc. If you know anything about Illitch, he takes care of his guys more than anyone in any sport.

        Ken Holland is probably the smartest GM in the game to the point where his rare mistakes are scrutinized way too much. Spoiled fans who just want to toys and drama don’t dictate who the best GM is.

        And even though I think he has a couple of flaws, Mike Babcock is the best coach in the game.

  4. sullivan1870 - May 18, 2014 at 12:39 PM

    You also have to think about Jeff Blashill he is up to are the Wings just going to let The Calder cup winning coach just walk away

    • imnotyourbuddyguy - May 18, 2014 at 1:04 PM

      If he can’t wait, then yup

  5. mackattack29 - May 18, 2014 at 1:07 PM

    Lol media can dream up anything they want… babcock isn’t leaving lol.

  6. apkyletexas - May 18, 2014 at 1:14 PM

    Where have I heard this before?

    Oh yeah – every coach that’s ever left a team in any sport for a different team. “I don’t want to leave”. “Love these guys”. “Love these owners/University”. “Love this team”. “My family is comfortable here”. “I already have a job”.

    He’ll be in Pittsburgh by next summer. Mark it zero, Smokey.

  7. bostonfrogs - May 18, 2014 at 1:44 PM

    Yes, making the playoffs and continually being eliminated in the 1st or 2nd round is such a lofty goal. Detroit can not–repeat–can NOT allow this veritable maestro of hockey to escape, not unless Jacques Demers or Dave Lewis are available to immediately take his place behind the bench.

    • oldfatbaldguy - May 18, 2014 at 6:41 PM

      That’s kind of harsh on Demers, considering he took the Wings from historic levels of suckitude to the conference finals in one season, then won a Cup in Montreal.

  8. 16thearlofderby - May 18, 2014 at 2:10 PM

    babcock politics are spot on

    hope to see him with another team soon

    babcock derby maybe next year

    promotion or he’s still a coach

  9. jeff91121 - May 18, 2014 at 2:39 PM

    Hopefully Babcock’s contract situation and the demand for his services elsewhere puts a little additional pressure on Holland to make some smart, aggressive moves for free agents this off season.

    • rbbbaron - May 18, 2014 at 3:25 PM

      Yeah lol, welcome Dan Boyle to Detroit for the next 4 years @ 5mil, weclome R.J, Umberger for a 1st rounder and Jarnkrok-caliber prospect, and welcome back Dan Cleary for that 3 year, 2.5mil contract that Holland wanted but couldn’t afford give to you last year
      Get ready for Holland to leave a scorched earth

      • jeff91121 - May 18, 2014 at 4:10 PM

        I really don’t see Cleary being back….at any price. Umberger is not worth another player…might be different if he was a free agent. I would not be surprised to see Boyle be brought in. I am against that personally. I would much rather see them go after Niskanen hard. I know Niskanen is going to be very sought after but I think he would be worth overpaying for if they can lock him up long term. The team does have some players that may be valuable as trade bait…but have to get value for them. Not give away a top prospect like Holland did for Legwand. Babcock is on record subtly asking for more talent, so I really think Holland has to give Babcock what he is asking for or risk losing him to a team that will.

      • oldfatbaldguy - May 18, 2014 at 6:47 PM

        Holland has had two bad summers in a row. If Cleary is still with the Wings it will be as a scout, but overpaying for Boyle is something I could absolutely see happening.

      • shoobiedoobin - May 19, 2014 at 9:55 AM

        DDDEERRRRRRPPPP. He already said Cleary won’t be back and you only think he’ll trade a prospect because it’s fresh in your mind. If you actually used that electric meat inside your head you’d remember that nowadays he’s hardly keen on giving away prospects. If he was we’d have gotten Iginla and a few other guys. And those are just the nixed trades that we know about.

        But I have a feeling you know all this, but are too proud to erase your line in the sand. You’ve said Holland sucks so now it’s a mission to prove it. Evidence to the contrary gets ignored in favor of confirmation bias. You’re a dime a dozen online.

  10. slysipops - May 18, 2014 at 3:11 PM

    simple : great guy …great coach !

  11. mastodonry - May 18, 2014 at 9:12 PM

    I mean if Ken “Let me sign a few more over the hill guys so good young players sit in Grand Rapids longer than they should so we can dig a hole the first half of the season” Holland is let go I wouldn’t exactly lose sleep…

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