Former Detroit Red Wings general manager Ken Holland makes the Hall of Fame

Embed from Getty Images  Jimmy Devellano, three years into his job as general manager of the Detroit Red Wings, called Ken Holland and offered him a job as scout. Holland would become the Red Wings GM and build a 3 time Stanley Cup Championship team. Yesterday, the former Red Wings and current Edmonton Oilers general manager got the call. Ken Holland is going into the Hockey Hall of Fame.

Ken Holland oversaw the Detroit Red Wings longest run of success. He was Detroit Red Wings GM from 1997-2019. Holland’s Red Wings teams won 3 Stanley Cups and reached the playoffs 19 seasons in a row, which extended Detroit’s playoff run to 25 year.

Last year Ken Holland left the Red Wings organization when owner Christopher Ilitch brought Steve Yzerman in to be general manager. Holland has many reasons for being in the Hall of Fame.

Ken Holland saw his Red Wings teams win four President’s Trophies (2002, 2004, 2006, 2008) the Wings won more regular season and playoff games with a combined 1,044 more than any other NHL team.

In a statement released Ken Holland said: “I am incredibly humbled by this honor, I am in this game because I loved it as a young man and I am happy to have been able to stay in the game.”

Ken Holland caught flak from Red Wings fans as he did hand out bad contracts and sign some iffy free agents. That should not be. Ken Holland’s work speaks for it’s self. Very few general manager have the resume Holland has.

I for one am happy for Ken Holland and all he accomplished while in Detroit. His Hall of Fame nod is the icing on the cake for a job well done. As Detroit Red Wings fans wait while current GM Steve Yzerman rebuilds the team (which he will do) it is nice that the man before him gets the recognition he deserves.

Report: Detroit Red Wings Ken Holland to become the GM of the Edmonton Oilers

Embed from Getty Images A report broke Sunday morning that former Detroit Red Wings general manager Ken Holland appears to be headed to the Edmonton Oilers. Promoted to senior vice president last month when the Red Wings tabbed Steve Yzerman to be their general manager. Holland leaves good and bad in Detroit.

Ken Holland could be introduced as early as Tuesday in Edmonton. Holland has spent 36 years in Detroit with the Red Wings organization. The last 22 as general manager. Ken put together three Stanley Cup Championship teams, 10 division titles and four Presidents’ Trophies during his tenure.

No one in the Red Wings or Oilers organization was available  for comment. The deal is reportedly five years at $5 million per year. Edmonton has missed the NHL playoffs 12 of the last 13 seasons. The Oilers have a generational player in Connor McDavid who is being wasted by the Oilers lack of ability to surround him with a good supporting cast.

For all the good things Ken Holland did, he also did a good amount of damage in Motown. Handing out bad contracts and driving the salary cap for an owner who demanded it.

Steve Yzerman inherits a team with a solid young core and top prospects to complete the teams rebuild. His first order of business may be to purge the Red Wings roster of older players on bad contracts while infusing young players and top free agents.

Holland, meanwhile has his work cut out for him in Edmonton. For all the flack Red Wings fans have given him, Holland did brings championships to Detroit. He played a large part in Keeping the Wings 25 year playoff streak alive. That should not be forgotten by Detroit hockey fans.

Fans who in the end get what they wanted most. Moving from one good general manager to a great general manager.

The Detroit Red Wings are facing a HUGE offseason

Embed from Getty Images The Detroit Red Wings have been rebuilding their roster. That is not new news. During this time the Red Wings have placed emphasis on restocking with promising young talent. The  Wings are in a good position to win the 2019 NHL Draft Lottery. But there is more to the offseason story.

For starters questions surround the future of general manager Ken Holland who is under contract though 2019-2020. There is a loud noise coming out of Detroit, Holland could be replaced this summer by former Red Wings Hall-of-Famer Steve Yzerman, who built the Tampa Bay Lightning into a league powerhouse.

Ken Holland has been been mentioned with the current general managers job with the  Edmonton Oilers. It is well known Holland and Oilers owner Daryl Katz are good friends. So there could be something to this rumor.

The Detroit Red Wings currently stand with an 11.5% chance at the number one pick in the NHL draft. Even if Detroit does not have the top pick they will have a top five pick and will be able to grab a potential impact player in the top-five.

With plenty of salary cap space, Detroit could look to set their  sights on a club with limited salary-cap space. Holland (or whoever is in the general mangers chair) could dangle offer sheets to young restricted free agents on cap-strapped teams.

The Detroit Red Wings Pipeline is in very good shape as far as prospects, who could be trade bait to pry away a budding stars such as Toronto Maple Leafs Mitch Marner.

With the young Red Wings core taking steps forward, this is a bit of a critical offseason. The Red Wings next phase needs to be bringing in good solid veterans. Both offense and defense. No reason to go sign a player like Erik Karlsson of the San Jose Sharks just yet.

But a couple of players that can bring the young Wings to the playoffs doorstep. That is what needs to happen as the curtain closes on the 2018-19 regular season and the Detroit Red Wings begin to prep for the offseason.


Detroit Red Wings: infuse young defensmen is a must.

Embed from Getty Images I don’t pretend to know more than Detroit Red Wings, general manager Ken Holland. But when a team is rebuilding they tend to move out under preforming  veterans and bring in younger players.

In my opinion, Jonathan Ericsson, Nicklas Kronwall and Danny DeKeyser should be replaced. Ericsson has woefully under preformed for three seasons now. Kronwall, once a defensive force because of two bad knees is a shell of his former self. Danny DeKeyser’s play has taken a nose dive.

The rebuilding Red Wings need to and should being giving roster spots to Filip Hronek, Joe Hicketts and  Dennis Cholowski. Joe Hicketts is the shortest defender in the Detroit Red Wings pipleline. But, he just may be the best.  Filip Hronek, may be the biggest riser in the Detroit system. He will remind many of the Anaheim Ducks Sami Vatanen. Great speed and great vision. Solid on offense. A force on defense. Dennis Cholowski’s game has grown by leaps and bounds. Nobody out works Cholowski in practice or games.

These three defensive players are all ready. To send them to the minors would be a slap in the face to the players, the rebuild, and Detroit Red Wings fans. It would also stunt the players growth.

With that Ken Holland, must do the hard thing. Remove players who are past their prime or who have under preformed. It is nothing personal. I really liked Nicklas Kronwall but it is painful to watch him struggle on two bad knees.

It is time for the future. Detroit, selected four more defensive players in the 2018 NHL draft. They will be ready soon. It is time to move on.

Detroit Red Wings: Ken Holland’s demise was a lie

Embed from Getty Images Heading in year two of a rebuild the Detroit Red Wings, needed a solid draft to speed the process up. As the media and fan base had Detroit general manager Ken Holland with one foot out the door. Holland struck back.

Ken Holland, a very proud man. He should be his work as Detroit Red Wings general manager is both legendary and Hall of Fame worthy. Holland, had a few bad years that is no secret. While many thought his best days were behind him the 2018 NHL draft showed everyone Holland is still one of the very best general managers in sports.

Yes the Red Wings, were given two first round draft gifts in the form of Filip Zadina (forward) and Joe Veleno (center.) Then came day two of the draft and Holland reminded Red Wings nation, he’s still got what it takes.

In desperate need of defense starting in round two Holland rolled up his sleeves and went to work. The Red Wings, drafted Jared Mclsaac who at 6′ 1″ is one of the taller Wings defense prospects. Very good skater. Very solid two way player who can quarterback the power play.  Ken Holland stole this pick. Mclsaac was first round talent.

Also in the second round the Red Wings, took another forward Jonatan Berggren from Sweden. He is fast and has a nice shot but will need to add weight before he is Motown bound.

In the third round Ken Holland, and the Red Wings, selected Alec Regula. A player from the Detroit area. At 6′ 4″ he is a towering defenseman. For his size he is mobile and is great passing the puck. He needs to work on not being hesitant with the puck. Grand Rapids bound for sure to sure up his game. The wait will be worth it.

Next defensman Seth Barton, was the Detroit, target in the draft. His game is close to Chicago Blackhawks defender Brent Seabrook’s.  After just turing 18 Barton is headed to college to play and develop his game.

The Detroit Red Wings, thanks in large part to general manager Ken Holland were the big winner at this years draft. Obtaining help for right now and in a few years. The Detroit Red Wings, draft has now  sped up the rebuild Knocking at least two years off the table.

Red Wings, fans should be rejoicing.

Detroit Red Wings: do not worry about the lottery

Embed from Getty Images Saturday night we will find out exactly where the Detroit Red Wings, will be picking in the 2018 NHL draft. But fear not where that spot is.

The rebuilding Red Wings, will have an impact player in their system after the NHL draft. I know that the #1 pick is glamorous. That really can be thrown out the window in this years draft as there is talent aplenty to be had.

Detroit, is in pretty good shape defensively. In my opinion they should focus on forwards. The need forechecking, goal scoring, play with a snarl forward to help move the rebuild along.

Swedish defenseman Rasmus Dahlin, is the favorite to go first over all. Then it gets interesting. The Red Wings, need more than one defensman. The fact that they have multiple draft picks is a great thing given the talent level this draft presents.

Detroit, general manager Ken Holland, has been out scouting and gathering information. I expect a very solid draft class for both he and his scouting department.

The Detroit Red Wings, will pick somewhere in the top 10 picks. I am looking forward to seeing a player that can help the team sooner than later. Two players that I believe can help right away are left wing Brady Tkachuk, Boston University and right wings Serron Noel, Oshawa. Both players are NHL ready and will not need minor league time.

It is going to be interesting going forward seeing how Ken Holland, stocks the Red Wings.

Detroit Red Wings: shocker

Embed from Getty Images What seemed like a slam dunk sure fire ending turned into a surprise when the Detroit Red Wings brought general manager Ken Holland back on a two year extension.


In a move that both shocked and angered Red Wings fans Chris Ilitch has picked Holland to finish the rebuild he started. It actually may not be a bad idea. Here’s why.

For starters young players stepped up. Dylan Larkin showed he is ready for a job anchoring the first line. Young Winger Anthony Mantha grew as well as left wing Tyler Bertuzzi. Other young players showed they are ready to help out as well.

This speaks volumes for Holland and the player development  Detroit has in place. Now the hard part comes. It would seem like having a bunch of draft picks would be a great place for the Wings to be in. Holland and his scouting department must be spot on in this years draft in order to speed the rebuild up.

As for owner Chris Ilitch he seems to be signaling he wants a veteran to spear head a difficult rebuild.  In his time before he was a general manager Holland, was a top amateur scout. He is getting back to his roots as he plans to go and personally scout players. In my opinion that is a very good move.

After all is said and done Ken Holland was only given a two year deal. Perhaps, they want to keep him on a short leash. There is still a lot of work to be done. The Detroit Red wings lack an impact player and goalie Jimmy Howard will be 34 years old entering next year and on the last year of his contract. With no goalie help in sight.

Only the Red Wings front office brass knows if head coach Jeff Blashill will be back. Based on player growth I’d say he will.



Detroit Red Wings April fools

Embed from Getty Images Red Wings fans would really like this to be some sort early April fools joke. But, the reality is it is not. Ken Holland, will apparently get his shot to rebuild the Winged Wheels.

For better or worse. There is at this time no word on a contract extension for Holland. That could be intentional. Ownership could possibly see how this years draft goes.
In a very unrealistic thought perhaps ownership wants Ken, the coaches and players for focus on finishing the season before any sort of announcement is made. Fans hope the announcment is that Holland is leaving his general managers position.
Former Detroit Red Wings legend, captain and NHL Hall of Fame member as well as current Tampa Bay Lightning general manager Steve Yzerman recently said “Ken Holland deserves patience.”  Unless he’s talking about tanking Wings fans won’t care about that statment even from a beloved sports figure.
Maybe, Yzerman is right. Ken Holland has architected some very good hockey teams. He has also over spent and has maxed out the salary cap. The real question is can Holland recapture his old magic? The odds are long at best.
I for one was and still am in favor of a fresh start. Detroit’s owner feels this is the best rout to take. We shall see how it plays out. But for now it has left a bad taste in the fan base’s mouth.

Ken Holland’s last stand

Embed from Getty Images His time in Detroit with the Red Wings appears to be running out. Last Saturday his boss and Red Wings and Detroit Tigers owner, Chris Ilitch chose not to give him a vote of confidence while taking in a Tigers spring training game.

However, working to what again appears to be the end Holland pulled off a trade last week and as it stands right now the Red Wings have 13 draft picks in the first 3 rounds of the 2018 NHL draft.
Trading Tomas Tatar to the Vegas Golden Knights for a first, second & third round pick reminded Red Wings fans that despite being on thin ice with fans and team management Holland is still more than capable of improving the teams future.
In a year where there is fantastic talent this is a great year to amass draft picks.
The Red Wings rebuild is in full swing. Suddenly it’s much easier to stomach. The Red Wings will be back to their winning ways soon.