The Detroit Red Wings agreed to a five-year extension with their AHL affiliate, the Grand Rapids Griffins, on Wednesday.
The Grand Rapids Griffins are currently ranked 12th in the AHL's Western Conference with a record of 25-22-5. Since 2002, the Griffins have sent 42 players onto Detroit, including 19 who have played for the Red Wings this season.
In all, 19 of the 30 players who’ve skated for the parent club this season are former or current Griffins, and 12 Detroit regulars logged at least one complete season in Grand Rapids prior to earning a full-time job with the Red Wings: Howard, MacDonald, Jonathan Ericsson, Jakub Kindl, Niklas Kronwall, Kyle Quincey, Justin Abdelkader, Cory Emmerton, Valtteri Filppula, Darren Helm, Jiri Hudler and Jan Mursak.
The new agreement, which continues through the 2016-2017 season, transfers the managing responsibilities to the parent club. The teams are located just 160 miles apart, among the closest between AHL-NHL parent clubs.