Ken Holland on the brink of history, CapFriendly no longer, and a dream come true

After a busy weekend in the hockey world, we catch you up on all of the top headlines.
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Well, it was a bit of an eventful weekend in the hockey world. Let's start with former Detroit Red Wings general manager Ken Holland. Holland is on the brink of history, but his Edmonton Oilers have a lot of work to do. The three-time Stanley Cup general manager (1998, 2002, 2008) can be just the third manager to win Stanley Cups with multiple organizations. Holland was inducted into the Hall Of Fame in 2021 and ranks fifth in GM victories.

Holland seems to take a lot of heat for his body of work. Many are quick to point out that Holland was born on third base when he took over Detroit's GM duties ahead of the 1998 season, taking over for the great Jim Devellano. Devellano was a genius when it came to identifying talent, or should I say putting the right people in the right positions to identify talent. Devellano was an incredible team builder and draft wizard. Holland had a front-row seat learning from one of the best managers of all time and quickly used all of the resources made available to him from owner Mike Ilitch to build one of the greatest dynasties in sports history. Like any GM, Holland has also made his fair share of missteps, but as a whole, he was pretty good until it was obvious the Red Wings were just trying to keep their postseason playoff streak intact.

The knock on Holland always was, "he can't win in the salary cap era" or "he's only great with an open checkbook." Well, Holland was able to win in the cap era thanks to Detroit's stellar 2008 cup run. Then, the knock was, "Well, he had great players like Nick Lidstrom, Pavel Datsyuk, and Henrik Zetterberg." Holland had been the GM when Detroit drafted the latter two and built a stable roster of complimentary pieces that gelled wonderfully together, which helped the Red Wings win that last championship and propel them back to the finals the following year.

As pointed out by Ansar Khan of MLive, Frank Gorman won Cups as GM of the Ottawa Senators (1920, 1921, 1923), Montreal Maroons (1935) and Montreal Canadiens (1944, 1946). More recently, former Red Wings goaltender Jim Rutherford won Cups as the GM with Carolina (2006) and Pittsburgh (2016, 2017).

Holland inherited two superstars in Connor McDavid, and Leon Draisaitl, but has since insulated them with the likes of Zach Hyman who he signed to a seven-year deal that averages $5.5 million. Hyman is coming off a career-high 54 goals in the regular season. Hyman, 32, has also recorded 14 playoff goals this postseason and has totaled 18 points in 19 games. Holland also added star defenseman Mattias Ekholm and additional depth pieces such as Evander Kane, Mattias Janmark, and Adam Henrique. Holland also fired head coach Jay Woodcroft, replacing him with former Detroit Red Wings video coach Kris Knoblauch, who has excelled in the role.

Holland's five-year deal with the Oilers expires on June 30th. He's been linked to the Columbus Blue Jackets for their GM opening. Edmonton currently trails the Florida Panthers 1-0 in the series, thanks to a marvelous game-one effort from goaltender Sergei Bobrovsky.

CapFriendly? No longer.

This one is a bit odd, but the popular NHL salary cap and unique interactive tool site has been sold to the Washington Capitals. Ironic? Odd? Maybe. NHL insider Elliotte Friedman of Sportsnet states, "These same sources stressed that both the Capitals and CapFriendly wanted the site to be publicly available and independently operated through the 2024 NHL Draft and the start of free agency, so it is not expected the sale will be official until at least July 5."

Friedman also mentioned that following the closing of the deal CapFriendly will go dark. If you are looking for an alternative, PuckPedia has you covered.

A dream come true for the newest Detroit Red Wings prospect.

Recently, the Detroit Red Wings signed free agent Czech forward Jakub Rychlovský to a two-year, entry-level contract.

Rychlovský, 22, is coming off a stellar 2023-24 campaign for Liberec Bili Tygri HC of the Czech league, during which he notched 26 goals and 46 points over 51 games. He also scored five goals and seven points in nine playoff games. The 6-foot left-winger can earn up to $1.74 million over his two-year deal, which he calls a dream come true.

“My dream has come true, I’ll do everything for a spot in the NHL,” Rychlovsky told Bílí Tygři Liberec’s website. In the last 365 days, so many things have happened around me that my life has been turned upside down,” Rychlovsky explained. “Last year, I would not have expected my career to take off in such a literal rocket way. I certainly appreciate it a lot. I will do my best to move forward in hockey."

Rychlovský quickly became one of the more coveted European free agents after leading the Czech Extraliga in goals this past season. Luckily, the Red Wings won the race to sign him.