Wednesday, July 06, 2005

Lewis' days numbered in Motor City?

It certainly looks as though the Detroit Red Wings are about to make a coaching change.
Amid published reports that the Wings are considering hiring Mike Babcock, who has until Thursday to let the Mighty Ducks of Anaheim know whether he's willing to accept a one-year contract offer from new GM Brian Burke, Detroit is set to let its head coach Dave Lewis know his fate in the next 24 to 48 hours.
"I talked with (Dave Lewis) yesterday," Wings' GM Ken Holland said today. "I told him I would get back to him before the end of the week."
That certainly sounds ominous for Lewis, who has been the Wings' head coach since Scotty Bowman retired. Lewis's contract expired on June 30th and the mere fact it wasn't automatically renewed with the CBA negotiations approaching a conclusion is a strong indicator Lewis isn't likely to be back with the Wings.
In fact, TSN has learned that Lewis' agent has contacted other teams around the league looking for openings for his client.
The 52-year old Lewis won 48 regular-season games in each of the two seasons with the Wings, but he could not translate that regular season success in the playoffs - his Wings were eliminated in the first and second round in the last two years.

Babcock has ties to the Red Wings. From 2000 through 2002 he coached the Cincinnati Mighty Ducks of the AHL when the Mighty Ducks and Red Wings shared the club. Also, Red Wings assistant general manager Jim Nill worked with Babcock on the 2004 World Championship team that won gold with Nill acting as the general manager and Babcock as an assistant coach.
Detroit got a first hand look at Babcock's talents when he led the Mighty Ducks to a stunning first round sweep of the heavily-favoured Wings in the 2003 playoffs. The Ducks went all the way to the Stanley Cup finals that spring.
-referenced from

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