Red Wings promote McDonnell
"Joe has been with the club for 11 years and, along with Jim Nill, has been an integral part of the very successful history of amatueur drafts for the Red Wings," said Holland. "He's very deserving of this promotion and I'm pleased that he will be continuing as a part of our staff." McDonnell, 44, joined the Red Wings following nine years as the coach and general manager of the Kitchener Rangers (QMJHL), the junior team he had once played for. He was signed as an under age free agent in 1980 by the Vancouver Canucks.
McDonnell's career as an NHL defenseman included one year with Vancouver, two seasons in the Edmonton system and two years with the Pittsburgh Penguins. His career was cut short due to a back injury and he finished with 50 NHL games played (2-10--12).