New Edmonton Oilers general manager Ken Holland joined 97.1 The Ticket’s “Jamie and Stoney” morning show to discuss his memories of running the Detroit Red Wings for over two decades.
Interview can be listened to here.
Though he was named Vice President of the Red Wings upon the return of Steve Yzerman as GM, Holland realized he still wanted to be in that position – then the Oilers came calling with a five year, $25 million contract offer. Holland couldn’t refuse.
“When I went to the World Under 18’s a week later,’ Holland said on Jamie and Stoney’s morning show on 97.1 the Ticket, “with Steve, Kris Draper and their scouts, obviously the rumors were out there and there were a couple teams out there [in need of a general manager], I started to realized that I enjoyed being a general manager in the National Hockey League and felt that Edmonton would be a great opportunity for myself.”
What was his favorite memory with the Red Wings?
“Making the playoffs for all those years,” Holland said, “and giving the fans hope that we can be the last team standing. With the salary cap coming in 2005 and with Yzerman near the end, Fedorov gone and Shanahan was near the end, there was a lot of talk of doom and gloom in Detroit. For the next 10 years with the work of our scouts and drafting Zetterberg, Datsyuk, Kronwall, Franzen, Hudler, Filppula and Howard and others we had another 10 year run. We were the last team to miss the playoffs in the salary cap era. We lost a lot of players and still were able to go on a 10 year run. I was proud to work with Mike Babcock for 10 years.”
“The transition from 05-06 into a salary cap world and we had to go from a $80 million payroll to a $40 million payroll, basically halved it, and we were able to continue to be an elite team.”