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Red Wings announce Ken Holland contract extension beyond next season

The fantasy that most Detroit Red Wings fans have of former captain Steve Yzerman coming to town to once again rescue a franchise in desperate need of help just took a devastating blow.

The Red Wings have announced that Ken Holland has been signed to a two-year contract extension. That news comes not long after they announced that he would be retained at least through next season.

This move will surely anger fans who were already dismayed at the news that Holland would be the one to lead the rebuild. One can only imagine what direction this team will be taking, especially after Holland himself opined that rebuilds take 8-10 years.

(Never mind the fact that the expansion Vegas Golden Knights won their division in year one.)

Here is the team’s official press release. Make of it what you will.

DETROIT – Detroit Red Wings Governor Christopher Ilitch today announced that executive vice president and general manager Ken Holland has been signed to a two-year contract extension.

Currently the second-longest tenured general manager in the National Hockey League, Holland has won three Stanley Cups (1998, 2002, 2008) as Red Wings general manager and was Detroit’s assistant general manager for a fourth championship in 1997. Under his watch, the Red Wings have won four Presidents’ Trophies, captured 10 division championships, won five regular-season conference titles and reached at least 100 regular-season points a league-high 13 times in the last 17 seasons. The Red Wings have also won 893 regular-season games and 119 playoff games since Holland assumed general manager duties in July 1997, topping the NHL in both categories during that span.

The Red Wings also made the playoffs in each of Holland’s first 19 seasons at the helm, comprising the majority of a run of 25-straight seasons in which the team qualified for the postseason from 1990-2016 – the third-longest streak in NHL history. With a focus on developing a consistently competitive franchise through scouting, drafting and developing from within, Holland led a staff that selected 10 players at the 2017 NHL Entry Draft and currently holds an NHL-high 11 selections for the upcoming 2018 NHL Entry Draft, including up to seven over the first three rounds. Additionally, the Red Wings currently hold 10 picks for the 2019 NHL Entry Draft.

“Ken Holland is a highly accomplished and well-respected general manager who played an integral role in bringing four Stanley Cup championships to Detroit,” said Ilitch. “Ken has a passion for scouting and is an astute talent evaluator. He has done a tremendous job over the last few seasons acquiring high draft picks and creating a tremendous opportunity to supplement our current roster and core of young players with additional high-end prospects. He has my support and that of our owner, Marian Ilitch, and we are completely aligned on our strategy for building a Stanley Cup contender.”

Holland, 62, is currently in his 35th season overall with the Red Wings. After concluding his playing career in 1985, the last two seasons of which were spent in Detroit’s organization as a goaltender, Holland began working for the Red Wings as a western Canada scout (1985-89), followed by five seasons as the team’s director of amateur scouting (1989-94) and three years as assistant general manager (1994-97).

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