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Red Wings' Babcock refutes contract extension report

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Detroit Red Wings coach Mike Babcock refuted a report that he was close to signing a contract extension in video posted on Twitter by Fox Sports Detroit after practice Thursday.

The Windsor Star reported Wednesday that an announcement of a contract extension that would make Babcock the highest paid coach in the NHL could be imminent. TSN's Darren Dreger also reported a contract offer was expected to be made in the coming days.

Babcock is in the final year of his contract.

"[Detroit general manager] Ken Holland and I, we talked before the year, we agreed that we wouldn't do this during the year," Babcock said. "Our team is going good, our team is playing good. I like the way we're playing. We don't need any distractions. We've had tons of people in this dressing room go through contracts when I've been here and it's been no big deal. I'm happy here. I like the general manager. They treat me good. I don't know what else I can tell you. But as far as negotiation between Mike Babcock and Ken Holland, there is none, OK? There isn't."

Babcock said he doesn't think it's a possibility he will sign a contract with the Red Wings during the season.

"I think that's what we decided," he said. "Like I said to you, I'm with Ken all the time, we can talk all the time. We haven't about this, period. But it's not like I'm knocking on his office door or he's knocking on mine. We're fine. He likes winning and I like winning. We're both happy."

Babcock has coached the Red Wings since 2005-06 and has reached the Stanley Cup Playoffs every season. He led Detroit to a Stanley Cup championship in 2008 and returned to the Stanley Cup Final in 2009.

Babcock has 501 NHL victories, including 432 with the Red Wings. Detroit is in first place in the Atlantic Division with 40 points.

"Besides my family, the thing I like maybe most is winning," Babcock said. "That's the process here. That's what we're trying to do here. That's what I do. If you think I'm working harder this year because I'm in the last year of my contract, it makes no difference. I grind, that's what I do. I'm a professional grinder. I love winning. We'll see what happens. We've got a game [Friday].

"I'm telling you the truth right here, nothing's happened."

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