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|Posted: Thu May 21st, 2015 02:05 am||
|The Maple Leafs announced the signing of the highly coveted head coach Wednesday to a deal reportedly worth about $50 million over an eight-year period.
"Any time you're an unrestricted free agent in the prime of your career, there's going to be opportunities that probably will stagger you," the GM said.
Holland said Babcock called him at around 11:15 a.m. to inform the GM of his decision, hours after Babcock came to Holland's house and expressed mixed feelings.
The Red Wings need to fill the void left by Babcock's departure, and Holland said he has two or three candidates in mind.
Grand Rapids Griffins head coach Jeff Blashill is a leading candidate, and Holland said he will spend time with the coach of the Red Wings' AHL affiliate soon.
Holland added that former Pittsburgh Penguins head coach Dan Bylsma would be considered.
Red Wings owner Mike Ilitch didn't overreact when he found out about Babcock's destination.
Holland: Mike Ilitch reaction to Mike Babcock leaving was Babcock was given green light to leave, let's find next coach.
— Helene St. James (@HeleneStJames) May 20, 2015
The Red Wings GM displayed a similar level of acceptance.
"All good things come to an end," Holland said.