In a move that was anticipated by nearly everyone in the Red Wings community. Jeff Salajko was hired as the goalie coach of the Detroit Red Wings. Salajko has a long history with Petr Mrazek, surely a key component in this deal coming to fruition.
Salajko replaces the long tenured Jimmy Bedard, who had held the position for close to a couple of decades. He is part of the overhaul the Wings have undertaken this offseason. They have already hired Doug Houda as an assistant that will be in charge of the penalty kill and defensemen.
While his time with Petr Mrazek may be what got him the job, he has had extended time with the Ohio State hockey programs. He was a volunteer assistant for the Ohio State’s Mens team and goalie coach for the Women’s team for a period of time. His residence in Columbus has been due to his time with the Chill, a now defunct ECHL.
One would expect with this promotion that this closes the door on Jimmy Howard’s time with the Wings. It shouldn’t be a surprise to anyone that the Wings are trying to trade the overpaid net minder. It will be very tough to find the right partner for such a player.
Nonetheless, this is a step in the right direction as his developmental skills have been on full display recently. They will surely need a new backup in the short term and he will get the opportunity to mold them, hopefully, into a player similar to Petr Mrazek. It is a big risk but the reward could be just as huge. A welcoming sign in the Motor City.