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Babcock Is No Bowman

from Ron Cook of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette,

Since when did Mike Babcock become the next Scotty Bowman?

There seems to be sentiment out there that Babcock, the Detroit Red Wings coach, would solve all that ails the Penguins. That belief is so strong among many in the Penguins fan base that they virtually are willing to write off next season to wait for Babcock, who has a year left on his contract and said he won’t leave Detroit until after the youngest of his three children graduates from high school next spring. That’s crazy for a couple of reasons. One, Babcock might not leave Detroit at all. And two, he’s not another Bowman, who won nine Stanley Cups as a coach and four more as an administrator. No one is, of course....

By some measurables, Bylsma has been a more successful NHL coach than Babcock. Bylsma’s regular-season winning percentage is .670, Babcock’s with Detroit, .654. Bylsma’s playoff winning percentage is .551, Babcock’s with Detroit, .557. Since 2009, when Bylsma’s Penguins beat Babcock’s Red Wings to win the Cup in seven games, the “underachieving” Penguins have gone 4-5 in postseason series, the Red Wings, 3-5. The Red Wings won the Cup in 2008 under Babcock, beating Michel Therrien’s Penguins in six games.

Many will say not to blame Babcock for the Red Wings coming up short the past five seasons, that the team didn’t have Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin. But a strong argument can be made that Pavel Datsyuk, Henrik Zetterberg and Nicklas Lidstrom (for the first three of the five seasons) provided a pretty solid foundation in Detroit. If the Penguins underachieved, didn’t the Red Wings?

One of the more compelling reasons being pushed for the Penguins trying to get Babcock at all costs is that he would make Crosby happy.


Filed in: NHL Teams, Detroit Red Wings, Pittsburgh Penguins, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: mike+babcock


Heaton's avatar

Sweet, keep Bylsma!  That’s obviously working.

Posted by Heaton on 05/20/14 at 09:02 AM ET

MOWingsfan19's avatar

One of the more compelling reasons being pushed for the Penguins trying to get Babcock at all costs is that he would make Crosby happy.

Why, is Babcock the missing winger that Sid has been whining for?

Posted by MOWingsfan19 from I really like our team on 05/20/14 at 09:29 AM ET

Red Winger's avatar

Crosby is the Veruca Salt of the NHL

“I want Babcock now! I want him NOW! NOW! NOW!! NOW!!!”

Posted by Red Winger from Sault Ste Marie, MI on 05/20/14 at 09:36 AM ET

Evilpens's avatar

Just an aside for the non-Pittsburgh area fans or anyone who doesn’t know ! Ron Cook is a RETARD

Posted by Evilpens on 05/20/14 at 09:40 AM ET

Nathan's avatar

I think Bylsma is a solid coach, but c’mon, he’s only better than Babcock by “some measures” when you cherry pick the numbers. Babcock is nearly in a league of his own.

Think of it this way. If he called up every team in the league and said, “I want to coach your club,” which teams wouldn’t say yes? I think the list is very short. Chicago is the obvious answer. St. Louis is maybe the only other team, and that’s borderline…

Also, comparing the teams since 2009 is flat-out absurd, especially comparing the last three seasons. The last three seasons, the Pens have clearly had better rosters with more talent than the Wings. There’s no comparison.

Posted by Nathan from the scoresheet! on 05/20/14 at 10:02 AM ET

Primis's avatar

Wow what a completely dumb article.

Regular season Winning Percentage is comparison is dumb.  Babcock has coached for 3 more full seasons in DET than Bylsma has in PIT—that’s a full 166 games more, which is a lot.  Let Bylsma coach for another 3 seasons in PIT and ee where his winning percentage goes…  And yet for some reason he cites Babcock’s higher playoff winning percentage as evidence too?  WTF?

And no, Babcock has NOT had Pavel Datsyuk and Henrik Zetterberg.  That’s part of the problem in fact.

Perfect example of someone really lacking in any real data to support their argument, so they cherry pick and hope people will squint at it and might believe them.  PIT writers are experts at that by now…

Posted by Primis on 05/20/14 at 10:04 AM ET

Down River Dan's avatar

......would solve all that ails the Penguins…....

....That would be a reduction in the estrogen levels in your captain…..

Posted by Down River Dan on 05/20/14 at 10:12 AM ET



He’s kind of right in that Babcock wouldn’t solve all of their problems. The organization would either have to keep Babcock, or keep the pri-madonnas and dirty players that Babs would weed out. And it’s pretty clear the organization is sticking with the players…

Posted by redwingshomersLOL on 05/20/14 at 10:22 AM ET

Evilpens's avatar

.(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) goody another Dumb RW’s fan !

David Morehouse the President & CEO who now wants to have say so in Hockey matters & who is nothing but a Democrat Political hack. Has NO, background in hockey is the guy running the show & it is all about PR, so no they don’t want “Dirty Players” & the reason Sid was constantly crosschecked in head & no Pens did anything

& an unnamed Penguin player told Mark Madden the reason no one came to Sid’s Defense is if they took a penalty they would be benched or scratched next game

Posted by Evilpens on 05/20/14 at 10:43 AM ET

awould's avatar

Posted by Evilpens on 05/20/14 at 10:43 AM ET

Before you start calling people dumb, which you do a lot, you should learn how to spell, use proper grammar and maybe throw in some actual punctuation now and then. From your posts, I can’t tell if you’re a 10 year old taking a break from your PS4 or an 80 year old taking a break from forwarding political emails.

Either way, you don’t contribute much other than incoherently ranting about how much you hate the team you love.

Posted by awould on 05/20/14 at 11:04 AM ET

SYF's avatar

I actually prefer EP’s “Devil’s Advocate” approach to the Pitt sports media.

Posted by SYF from Twerkin' with Anastasia Ashley on 05/20/14 at 12:19 PM ET

Wings_in_NYC's avatar

Posted by Evilpens on 05/20/14 at 10:43 AM ET

Ugh. Settle down, Francis. People like you make the internet insufferable.

Posted by Wings_in_NYC on 05/20/14 at 12:47 PM ET

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Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.

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