High praise from Detroit coach

I asked Detroit coach Mike Babcock Wednesday if he thought that the addition of the four players from Chicago – a team he is quite familiar with – would help the Thrashers get over the hump.

Here are his thoughts on the Thrashers and the addition of Dustin Byfuglien, Ben Eager, Andrew Ladd and Brent Sopel:

“I’ve been very impressed in the two games I watched Atlanta. There structure is good. They know how to play. They are organized. They are allowing the skill to come out because they are in the right spots to do that. You have to give the coach, his staff and the players a lot of credit. They are doing a good job here. …

“They are getting over the hump. Those players can come here, and they are good players, unless there is some structure and a foundation and a way to be successful it doesn’t matter who came here. They have done two things at the same time. Their back end is very good, in my opinion. We talked about [Byfuglien and Enstrom]. Bogosian is a good player, without any question about it. So you add him to the mix. Hainsey is a good player. Sopel is a good player. Sopel is a good player. That’s six guys that get the puck going. I like what they’ve done with their team. They are playing hard. They are playing smart. They give themselves a chance. And their goaltending has been outstanding. You add it all together, and they have a top-5 power play, it makes them tough.”

15 comments Add your comment


November 24th, 2010
1:32 pm

what else is he gonna say?


November 24th, 2010
1:42 pm

That’s true WB – unless a coach/player wants his comments on the opponents bulletin board they say only good things.


November 24th, 2010
1:47 pm

You said Sopel twice, left Oduya out

cousin Eddie

November 24th, 2010
2:53 pm

Sopel is so good, he has to mentioned twice!


November 24th, 2010
3:09 pm

I guess he didn’t catch the Panthers game last week.

Hip Check

November 24th, 2010
4:25 pm

Interesting information, Viv, but do you know any good copy editors? I see several mistakes.


November 24th, 2010
4:40 pm

A great hockey mind is alluding to the fact why the Thrashers are a different and better team this year. He’s not blowing smoke up anyone’s rear end. He also has prepared the red Borg to come in to the Bulb and not take them lightly. They are not the same old Thrashers. This has been evident from before pre-season and even in all of the pre-season losses.

The Thrashers are a team with structure, direction, and a system put in place by other great hockey minds. The players have bought into it and is evident from their words and play. They can now use their skill to win as a team instead of individuals. As Boulton said early on, “no more loosey-goosey hockey”. Time for some Thrasher fans and the rest of the NHL to buy in to it.

A convincing win or even a nail-biting win or loss to the Borg may wake some up. A blow-out loss will be the same old same old wailing. I don’t expect a blow-out but instead a game one play-off style game. This is a big game and everyone playing knows it. I expect good things. I can’t wait!

Sage of Bluesland

November 25th, 2010
1:33 am

…Just watched the replay of the game–impressive play and win. Keep playing like this and I may–may–begin to believe again. But, then I think of the ownership and reality comes crashing down again…

The only thing disturbing is the embarrassing misuse of the word “There” [sic] instead of “Their” by our esteemed beat-writer….

It’s almost as bad as seeing the word “complement” misused as “compliment” (not by our beat-writer; just a general comment aimed at the relatively ignorant masses)…

(Wow; I missed a stellar career in journalism, apparently…)

Cliff Fletcher

November 25th, 2010
8:57 am

Back in your hole Sage becuase you will never believe again.


November 25th, 2010
1:07 pm

This team is exciting. I can’t wait for the rest of the town to catch on to the fact that we have talent, a fun style of play, true leadership behind and in front of the bench, and some marketable personalities that the town can embrace. We have all the tumblers starting to click into place.

More efforts like the Washington and Detroit games plus more grit like the Islanders game and this team is going places.


November 25th, 2010
8:15 pm

Was that you?!?!? I mean the REAL Sage? If so keep watching, we need all the fans we can get to support the Boys in Blue and with your passion for the Octotards we can try to keep them on track here. In order for this team to continue to improve after this year, a number of signings will need to be done or else……well we know how that will end.


November 26th, 2010
9:39 am

I’ve waiting 35 years for a qualified statement like this through the Flames/Thrashers..If we lose the hockey franchise again we’ll never get another..


November 26th, 2010
9:43 am

Chris: Where did you get your G.E.D. ?? or did you just sleep through grammar class ??


November 26th, 2010
11:10 am

chris got good grammer, his jus a litle sloe. are he wuz drinkin beers

Cliff Fletcher

November 26th, 2010
11:29 am

Sage is patehetic-next he will be talking about the “Five Year Plan”. How about buying a ticket and going to a game for once? Wimp