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Milestone Monday: Mike Babcock's first win as Maple Leafs head coach

by Chris Lund / Toronto Maple Leafs



In a year of firsts for the Maple Leafs, the first of the firsts came from behind the bench.

Mike Babcock joined the Maple Leafs on May 20, 2015 and kicked off his tenure as the 30th head coach in franchise history on Oct. 7. Nine days later, in his fourth game calling the shots for the club, he captured his first win in a 6-3 victory over the Blue Jackets. After dropping the first three games of the season despite largely outplaying their opposition, the first win was a welcome one.

Roughly a month earlier, Babcock spoke to media on the first day of training camp and offered a lot of foresight into what lay ahead for the club in 2015-16. One particular portion of what he had to say spoke to his overall vision for the club.

"I'm proud to be here today, you have no idea. I'm proud and excited to be the head coach of the Maple Leafs and we have a big job. I'm excited about that, let's get on fixing it," said Babcock. "We're going to work hard to restore the Maple Leafs to their rightful place in the League."

Though the Leafs finished the season with 29 wins and 69 points, there were many strides taken in the overarching process and context laid out prior to the season. The club saw huge improvement in its underlying possession numbers and had the opportunity to integrate many of its young players into the roster by the end of the season. Those strides, coupled with the development of prospects with the Marlies, the junior ranks and securing this year's first overall pick -- one of 12 in the upcoming 2016 Draft -- have the organization and fans optimistic for what lies ahead.

Here's a look back at Coach Babcock's first win as Leafs head coach.

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