Abel to Yzerman
by IwoCPO on 10/11/10 at 10:40 PM ET
Oh, bother. There I go again with the confrontational blog title. It’s just that, well, there’s a certain redolent Swagger coursing through Hockeytown these days and it just got a lot more obnoxious today. You see, the coaching gold standard signed on for four more years this morning, to lead the best team in hockey, because the best GM in hockey doesn’t screw around.
“He’s the best coach in the business, and if he’s not, he’s one of the best coaches in the business,” Holland said. “Mike likes it here and we’ve had a great deal success under Mike. If he went on the open market, there would be a lot of interest of interest in him. But Mike likes it here.”
Oh, he is. The best that is.
You know it and so do I. They know it in hockey sewer St. Louis, heritage-laden Denver and on the banks of KC/Hamilton. They know it in Anaheim where Randy Carlyle is a punch line and up in San Jose where Babcock, Jr.‘s pretty good but he’s no Uncle Mike.
And most importantly, they know it in a room that is as smart, experienced and savvy as any team in hockey.
“He’s been very good for our team,” captain Nicklas Lidstrom said. “He makes sure that the team is prepared, he pays attention to detail, and he wants the best out of every player. He stays on top of things all the time.”
Whoa ho ho. Wait one damn minute. How could the guy who said that this morning be the same disgruntled Swede who…well, I’ll let renowned hockey insider Andy Strickland explain it as he did three years ago.
I’ve been told that all world defenseman Nicklas Lidstrom began to instruct his teammates not to say a word when they go into the special teams meetings. People who have covered the NHL and the Red Wings will tell you that Lidstrom is probably the nicest player in the NHL not to mention one of the best defenseman ever. One would have to try pretty hard to get Lidstrom not to like you
Ah yes. The power of the Gore. Andy Strickland’s “sources” and guarantees of a Detroit “implosion by Christmas” in 2006.
There apparently was more than just age as to why Yzerman decided to hang up the skates. The truth is Babcock better win in the playoffs or he won’t be in Detroit much longer.
Yeah boy. The “truth” according to Andy Strickland. Well, Uncle Mike didn’t necessarily “win” that Spring, thanks to Gary Bettman and a floating knuckleball of a puck that went past Dominik Hasek, gained steam, picked up speed and speared us all right in the nut sack.
Somehow Babcock survived that implosion and persevered long enough to win a Cup one year later, benching the best goalie of an era in favor of a forgotten Chris Osgood. Then he should have won the next one but another searing missile to the nutsack (this time Nick Lidstrom’s), a not-so-subtle agenda from the midget commissioner, some of the worst officiating in post-lockout history stymied him and his Wings. And then last year, dealing with crippling injuries and sporting a rookie goaltender, Babcock held the Wings together until the stallions got healthy. He orchestrated a brilliant two-month run of hockey that fell short when it turned out the only way to get into the playoffs was to ride the herd harder than their tired post-Olympic legs could handle.
But now they’re rested and the youngsters Mike Babcock has weened for four years are right there with the veterans Andy Strickland told us would pull a Julius Caesar on his ass. Now we’re looking at Filppula and Hudler, Franzen and Kronwall, Howard and Helm…all raised by a taskmaster Uncle who’s going to be pulling in a cool 2 million a year because Tick Tock Kenny Holland knows that when you compare him to the likes of Quenneville or Blyileelsma…well, there is no comparison. They just don’t measure up.
Four more years and the hits just keep on ‘comin in the Season of Swagger. Meanwhile, any comments from the gallery? Strickland? Anything? No?
We didn’t think so. Suck on it Andy. You know the drill.
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Welcome to Abel to Yzerman, a Red Wing blog since 1977. No other site on the internet has better-researched, fact-laden and better prepared discussions than A2Y. Re-phrase: we do little research, find facts and stats highly overrated and claim little to no preparation. There are 19 readers of A2Y. No more, no less. All of them, except maybe one, are juvenile in nature. Reminding them of that in the comment section will only encourage them to prove that. Your suggestions and critiques are welcome: firstname.lastname@example.org