Mike Babcock has been the head coach of the Detroit Red Wings for ten years. When he got the offer to coach the Toronto Maple Leafs – with a $50 million deal over eight years – he took it. Detroit general manager Ken Holland doesn’t blame him. Holland, who offered Babcock a five-year extension, said he understands. He knows 10 years is a long time for a coach.
The Detroit Free Press says fans shouldn’t fault Babcock “for taking a king’s ransom to coach a team that he rooted for as a kid.” The Press admits “It’s stupid money for a hockey coach, it’s big money even for a player…but you can’t pin that on Babcock.” Babcock is 52 years old.