While in Traverse City for the Detroit Red Wings training camp, the Toronto Sun’s Mike Zeisberger spoke with Ken Holland about Mike Babcock‘s decision to leave the Red Wings for the Toronto Maple Leafs:
“When you work with someone for 10 years and you’re in a business that is really competitive, you create a bond with each other,” Holland explained. “We won a Stanley Cup together. We were on a staff with the Canadian Olympic team that won two gold medals together. When you are at the Vancouver Games and you’ve just lost to the U.S. and your preparing to play Germany and you are joining in with Mike and Steve Yzerman and the rest of the staff to find a way to dig in and get the job done … that’s how you build relationships that last for the rest of your life.
“The last three years in Detroit, we found ourselves at points where you are on the bubble of making the playoffs and you are digging your fingertips in to find a way to make the playoffs and you accomplish those things together, well, all those things, like I said, combine to build relationships that last a lifetime.
“The relationship I have with Mike will go on for the rest of our lives. I have tremendous respect for what he does professionally and personally.”
Having said that, well …
“Well, he decided he wanted to move on,” Holland said. “And now, we want to kick his ass.”
The Red Wings open the season on October 9th against Mike Babcock and the Maple Leafs.