For years, the Detroit Red Wings front office has done whatever it took to compete for a Stanley Cup. The fan base enjoyed it and times wanted more to win a cup, however as time went, the fans appeared to become more and more disgruntled with the front office. I can’t say I don’t blame them at all. Last week The Hockey News putout a survey on how much confidence each fan base had in their front office. Safe to say Detroit fans have close to no confidence in the front office at all, mainly Red Wings general manager Ken Holland.
Right now Ken Holland is not the most favorite person in Detroit right now. There are multiple factors on why the Red Wings are in the spot they’re in now; half of it can be put on General Manager Ken Holland. From signing players to bad contracts, mishandling of young players, and more. Some believe he has failed to adapt to today’s NHL a.k.a the cap era. Now there are those who back Ken Holland often cite the success he’s had in the past and point out other factors that has hurt the team, which are partly true, however it seems that there’s more negatives that outweigh the positives. I mean there’s a reason why fans want Steve Yzerman to return to Detroit as general manager.
If you were to ask me what my biggest beef with general manager Ken Holland, it’s his mismanagement of the cap. Over signing players like Darren Helm, Justin Abdelkader, Jonathan Ericsson, and Jimmy Howard to name the few. As of now Detroit is having a difficult time reliving themselves of some of these contacts. His mismanagement of the cap has prevented Detroit from making key trades to address some needs, although part of it is refusing to give up the future which can be understandable. Sad thing about it is that Ken Holland has had multiple opportunities to buyout certain contracts (Ericsson) during the Buyout window to free up some space and has refused to do so. Many also tend to be upset with him on how he handles younger players down in Grand Rapids. In a day where you need to use your farm system in order to keep your cap flexible, it seems Holland still adamant about wanting to “over ripe” their prospects. Some, whom seem ready for the NHL, tend to find themselves in Grand Rapids for awhile before they get actual NHL minutes. This is due to the Red Wings having a spot occupied by a vet that was signed in the off-season, instead of just filling that spot with an NHL ready player/prospect. It also appears that he has an excuse for why things hasn’t been getting done and one of the few in the front office who throw prospects under the bus. As a general manager that isn’t a good look for you at all.
Ken Holland is in the last year of his contract and if things don’t appear to be turning around then he could find himself out the door. Fans are calling for him to be gone and there’s a quite a case for his contract to not be renewed, however with the Red Wings, loyalty is a thing and Holland has been there for quite some time. Loyalty isn’t everything though, Red Wings ownership should look and find someone who has a better understanding on how to succeed in today’s NHL and adjust to the cap era. That person isn’t Ken Holland at all.