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Babcock's milestone bittersweet

Coach's 300th win overshadowed by Zetterberg injury

Thursday, 12.17.2009 / 10:33 PM ET / News
By Bill Roose  - DetroitRedWings.com
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Babcock\'s milestone bittersweet
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DETROIT – The Red Wings’ 3-0 win over Tampa Bay on Thursday night was a bittersweet one.

The win at Joe Louis Arena was career coaching win No. 300 for Wings coach Mike Babcock, but it came at a high cost when star forward Henrik Zetterberg left in the first period after a huge open-ice hit from Lightning defenseman Mattias Ohlund.

“Obviously we have a depleted group and we had a little challenge tonight,” Babcock said. “But I think other guys stepped up and just grinded it out.”

Zetterberg, the Wings’ leading scorer this season, drove himself to a Detroit hospital for an MRI of his left shoulder.

“He’s probably upset with himself, he shouldn’t have got hit like that,” Babcock said. “But what do you do?”

If Zetterberg misses any games, he will be the ninth Red Wings’ regular to be added to the injury list, joining Dan Cleary (separated shoulder), Johan Franzen (torn ACL), Niklas Kronwall (sprained knee), Valtteri Filppula (broken wrist), Jason Williams (fractured fibula), Jonathan Ericsson (bone bruise), Darren Helm (sprained wrist) and Andreas Lilja (headaches).

Babcock, who began his NHL coaching career in Anaheim in 2002, has now compiled a 300-150-62 record. Since taking over in Detroit prior to the 2005-06 season, Babcock has led the Red Wings to a 231-88-43 record, which includes a Stanley Cup championship in 2008 and an NHL record four straight 50-win seasons.

Babcock’s 231 team wins ranks fifth in club history, trailing only Jack Adams (413 wins), Bowman (410), Sid Abel (340) and Tommy Ivan (262).

It took Babcock 612 NHL games to reach the 300 win milestone. In comparison, it took legendary hall of fame coach Scotty Bowman 552 games to collect victory No. 300 in the NHL.

Babcock got career win No. 200 on Dec. 15, 2007. It took 166 games for him to reach 300 on Thursday night.

Rookie goalie Jimmy Howard, who recorded his first career shutout after stopping 30 Lightning shots, was asked if he would fight Babcock for the game puck.

“Nah, he can have it,” said Howard with a smile. “It’s a lot bigger milestone than this.”

Because of his success at both the NHL and international levels, Babcock was tabbed again by Team Canada to serve as coach of the Canadian team in the Winter Olympics in Vancouver in February.




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STANDINGS

EASTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 p - WSH 82 56 18 8 252 193 120
2 x - PIT 82 48 26 8 245 203 104
3 y - FLA 82 47 26 9 239 203 103
4 x - NYR 82 46 27 9 236 217 101
5 x - NYI 82 45 27 10 232 216 100
6 x - TBL 82 46 31 5 227 201 97
7 x - PHI 82 41 27 14 214 218 96
8 x - DET 82 41 30 11 211 224 93
9 BOS 82 42 31 9 240 230 93
10 CAR 82 35 31 16 198 226 86
11 OTT 82 38 35 9 236 247 85
12 NJD 82 38 36 8 184 208 84
13 MTL 82 38 38 6 221 236 82
14 BUF 82 35 36 11 201 222 81
15 CBJ 82 34 40 8 219 252 76
16 TOR 82 29 42 11 198 246 69

STATS

2015-2016 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
H. Zetterberg 82 13 37 -15 50
P. Datsyuk 66 16 33 7 49
D. Larkin 80 23 22 11 45
T. Tatar 81 21 24 4 45
G. Nyquist 82 17 26 -2 43
J. Abdelkader 82 19 23 -16 42
M. Green 74 7 28 -6 35
B. Richards 68 10 18 4 28
D. Helm 77 13 13 -2 26
N. Kronwall 64 3 23 -21 26
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
P. Mrazek 27 16 6 .921 2.33
J. Howard 14 14 5 .906 2.80