from Ansar Khan of Mlive
The timing couldn’t have been worse.
One day after Detroit Red Wings general manager Ken Holland praised coach Jeff Blashill’s job performance this season, the team looked as disorganized and disinterested as it has in 15 months, losing 8-1 to the Montreal Canadiens.
Holland, after Monday’s trade deadline, said Blashill has done a great job. Not based on the standings but judged by the improvement of young players.
He said he will speak with Blashill before the end of the season regarding the future. Blashill is in the final year of a four-year contract. Holland didn’t say Blashill will be extended but strongly hinted that he will.
One rotten performance isn’t going to change his thinking. But the Red Wings have 18 games remaining and if this type of effort is repeated too often, Holland isn’t obligated to retain Blashill.
The Red Wings are on pace for 70 points, which would be their fewest in a non-lockout shortened season since 1989-90. The team’s record has regressed in each of Blashill’s first three seasons – from 93 points to 79 to 73.