DETROIT – The new-look Detroit Red Wings will have a new-look coach.

Mike Babcock, who led the Anaheim Mighty Ducks to the Stanley Cup finals two years ago, agreed to terms Thursday and will replace Dave Lewis in a time of transition for both the NHL and the Red Wings.

For the past decade, Detroit has been a team of future Hall of Famers with hefty paychecks. Now they will be vastly different after the agreement reached Wednesday to end the league’s lockout, which features a salary cap with a ceiling of $39 million.

The 42-year-old Babcock will be asked to develop youthful stars while putting a charge into the remaining veterans – a group that might include longtime captain Steve Yzerman and forward Brendan Shanahan.

Under the new labor agreement, which still must be ratified, they are subject to a 24 percent cut on their existing contracts.

But further changes are almost certain on a team that expected to have a $60 million payroll during the canceled 2004-2005 season.

Babcock, 69-76-19 in two years with Anaheim, has plenty of experience with young players.

He led the Ducks and then 26-year-old goaltender Jean-Sebastien Giguere to the Stanley Cup finals two years ago during his first season in Anaheim.

Robinson to return to coach Devils

NEWARK, N.J. – Larry Robinson, who led the New Jersey Devils to a Stanley Cup title in 2000 but was fired less than two years later, returned Thursday as coach of the team.

Robinson replaces Pat Burns, who has been diagnosed with cancer for the second time in a little more than a year. Burns, a three-time NHL Coach of the Year, had surgery earlier this month and was expected to undergo chemotherapy as well. Since August 2002, Robinson served as a special assignment coach.

with the Devils and worked with players at the franchise’s minor league affiliate in Albany.


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