Mike Babcock was told to go away this week, tough news for any professional.
The former coach of the Maple Leafs received a text from Brendan Shanahan to come chat back at the hotel in Arizona and right then, right there, he knew it was over. His tenure with the Leafs was done, after not even 25 games into this season. A 6-game losing streak was his parting gift and life without the Maple Leafs began. Unfortunately for the coach, he couldn’t head to another TFC game to have a tasty sausage. So where to next?
Seattle, that’s where.
The expansion team entering the league after next season is still without a head coach and Ron Francis and Seattle’s management team could have their man. For the team, it’s perfect. It would give them a chance to bring in an experienced coach with a colourful resume, who is a respected name around the league.
For Mike Babcock, it could be a match made in heaven. Think about it, Babcock would be able to sit and give his input on exactly what types of player’s he wants on his team. A full year to scout the entire league for precisely the players he’s looking for. Right-handers, left-handers, grit, toughness, ability to compete, all of the Babcock cliche’s would be in play. What a dream scenario for him as he could construct a team which he feels matches his system to a tee. Given Vegas’ success in their first season, the sports market in Seattle, and the ability to put his fingerprints all over the organization, Mike Babcock would be all ears.
In Toronto, he was coaching what he wanted, not what he had. He ran an overly-detailed system to a bunch of players who lost the message and weren’t interested in changing their games to match where they fit into the ‘Mike Babcock’ system. Seattle would give Mike Babcock a perfect chance to hit the reset button on his career.
As Travis Dermott mentioned before last night’s game, he feels the Maple Leafs made the right call firing Mike Babcock and it appears he would have been happy to drive his former coach to the airport for a flight to Seattle. Don’t let Ron Francis hear this…
— David Nestico (@davidnestico200) November 22, 2019