Jeff Blashill
Jeff Blashill was named head coach of the Detroit Red Wings on June 9, 2015.
Jeff Blashill was named head coach of the Detroit Red Wings on June 9, 2015.

Blashill had been the coach of the Red Wings' American Hockey League affiliate, the Grand Rapids Griffins. He replaced Mike Babcock, who was hired last month as coach of the Toronto Maple Leafs.

At the time of the hire, Blashill, 41, was the second-youngest coach in the League; the New Jersey Devils' John Hynes was 40.

Blashill was hired by the Red Wings as an assistant coach on Babcock's staff for the 2011-12 season. He spent the next three seasons with Grand Rapids, going 134-71-23. Grand Rapids also made the AHL playoffs in each of his three seasons.

They won the Calder Cup in 2013, his first season, and this season they advanced to the conference finals. Along the way Blashill helped develop some of the Red Wings' emerging young stars, among them forwards Gustav Nyquist, Tomas Tatar, Tomas Jurco and Riley Sheahan, and defensemen Xavier Ouellet and Alexey Marchenko. Blashill also was named the AHL Coach of the Year for the 2013-14 season.
A collegiate goalie at Ferris State University, it didn’t take long for Blashill to jumping into coaching after his senior season in Big Rapids, Mich. He quickly latched on to an assistant position with the Bulldogs in 1999 and after three seasons at Ferris and another six at Miami (Ohio), Blashill took a head coaching gig with the Indiana Ice in 2008, and led them to the USHL championship in his first season.

Blashill went on to coach the Western Michigan Broncos men's ice hockey team in 2010. In his first season as head coach, Blashill led WMU to a top-four finish in the CCHA, the CCHA Championship game, and the 2011 NCAA Division I Men's Ice Hockey Tournament, the best season for WMU in 15 years. After the season, he was named USCHO Coach of the Year, Inside College Hockey Coach of the Year, and College Hockey News Coach of the Year.