Griffins extend Red Wings affiliation for five years

DETROIT, Mich. (WOOD) — The Detroit Red Wings have extended their affiliation with the reigning Calder Cup champions for another five years.

The Grand Rapids Griffins will keep their partnership with the Red Wings through the 2021-2022 season.

“Our arrangement with the Griffins has been very beneficial for both organizations,” Red Wings Executive Vice President and General Manager Ken Holland said in a statement. “The American Hockey League is the premier development league, and Grand Rapids has proven itself to be a model franchise both on and off the ice.”

The Red Wings will continue overseeing the Griffins daily operations, setting the team’s playing roster, and providing equipment managers and athletic trainers.

In addition to extending the partnership, Grand Rapids is ensured to host at least one Red & White scrimmage with both Griffins and Red Wings players within the next five years. The Griffins have hosted four such events with the most recent being in 2011.

Since the partnership began in 2002, 85 players have played for the Red Wings after suiting up for the Griffins. Current Red Wings head coach Jeff Blashill also previously held the same post with the Griffins, leading the team to three consecutive AHL playoff appearances.

The Grand Rapids Griffins open up the 2017-2018 season at Van Andel Arena on Oct. 6.