The Detroit Red Wings officially announced that they extended head coach Jeff Blashill contract for two more years.
Blashill, 45, is in his fourth season with the Red Wings, being 31-38-10 so far into the 2018-2019 season. He will remain as head coach through the 2020-2021 season, giving him more time to rebuild this young Red Wings squad. This season, Dylan Larkin, Andreas Athanasiou and Tyler Bertuzzi all had career highs in goals and points this season. The Red Wings had nine rookies in the lineup. Last summer Larkin, Athanasiou and Anthony Mantha signed multi-year contracts last summer.
Some criticized Blashill’s extension due to missing the playoffs in the past three seasons. The clubs last playoff appearance was 2015-2016, Blashill’s first season as head coach.
UPDATE: Detroit #RedWings EVP & GM Ken Holland today announced that Jeff Blashill has agreed to a two-year contract extension to remain head coach of the Red Wings.
— Detroit Red Wings (@DetroitRedWings) April 2, 2019
The club has missed the playoffs the past three seasons under Blashill, fter being eliminated in the first round in 2015-16. But the organization believes he has done a good job developing young players and that the team is playing hard under him.
General manager Ken Holland praised Blashill for developing his players and making them more competitive.
“Jeff has done a tremendous job developing our young talent as we continue to rebuild our organization,” Holland said. “Our young players have made significant strides during his time as head coach and are playing important minutes in key situations. As we continue to build toward the future, we have the utmost confidence that Jeff is the coach best suited to help our prospects become impactful NHL players.”
Before becoming the Red Wings head coach, Blashill served as the Grand Rapids Griffins head coach. The AHL franchise had three of it’s most successful seasons in franchise history under Blashill, combining 134-71-12-11 regular season record, and their first Calder Cup in 2012-2013 season.
The Red Wings are 135-143-47 under Blashill. Tonight, they play against the Pittsburgh Penguins at Little Caesars Arena hoping to extend their win streak to six. The game starts at 7:30 p.m. ET ; (FS-D+, ATTSN-PT, NHL.TV).
Featured photo credit: The Associated Press
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