Apr 9, 2010, 12:50 PM EDT
Nicklas Lidstrom isn’t going to think about retirement – one way or the other – until the playoffs are over, according to a story written by Chris McCosky of the Detroit News.
Lidstrom, 39, is in the last year of his contract. Although general manager Ken Holland and Mike Babcock have made it clear they want and expect him to return next season, Lidstrom said he wouldn’t make any decision about his future until after the season.
“It’s more a matter of looking forward to the playoffs,” he said. “When you’ve been in so many playoff years and rounds, you just look forward to it. The intensity picks up, the fans get into it, it’s a lot of fun.”
Count me among the people who think that the genius Swede has plenty left in the tank. Many people will look at his “pedestrian” 49 points and the Red Wings’ on-and-off struggles and think that Lidstrom lost a step. Maybe that’s true, but I look at that drop a little differently; it’s more like going from “superhuman” to “alien life form good” instead of great to decent.
He still logs big minutes, plays great shutdown defense and scores a nice amount of points. The one point in favor of retirement is if Lidstrom himself is bothered even by the slightest slippage. One of the saddest things in sports is seeing a once-great player devolve into a shell of himself. I don’t think there’s much of a risk of that, but you never know.
Then again, if Lidstrom were to take a generous pay cut (say, a $5 million cap hit instead of his current $7.45 million), the Red Wings would have about $12 million to spend on improving their depth. By coming back for another year, Lidstrom could experience another season on a dominant Detroit team. Plus, there’s … you know, the money.
- Maloney signs long-term contract as Coyotes GM 0
- Playoffs Tonight: Penguins aim to finish off Senators 16
- Kings’ Quick ‘didn’t have to work hard’ in shutout win over Sharks 7
- Discuss: Kings dominate Game 5, one win away from Western Conference final 21
- Discuss: Red Wings take 3-1 series lead 62
- Discuss: Rangers stay alive with OT win 85
- What they’re saying about the Avs hiring Patrick Roy 9
- It’s official: Colorado names Roy sixth head coach in franchise history 56
- Couture accuses Kings captain Brown of diving 38
- Three reasons why the Rangers might buy out Richards 26
- Report: NHLPA director Fehr wants to address issue of fighting (113)
- Question for commenters: What, if anything, needs to be done about the officiating? (101)
- Discuss: Bruins rally in third, take 3-0 series lead (99)
- Discuss: Detroit takes 2-1 series lead vs. Chicago (95)
- Video: Crosby scores hat trick, hits playoff milestone against Senators (91)
- Tiger, LeBron and bids to be the best that ever lived
- PHT: Senators fight for playoff lives in Game 5
- HBT: A-Rod sells Miami home for $30 million
- PST: Key battles for Champions League final
- Struggling Blackhawks on brink of elimination
- PHT: Wings push Blackhawks to brink | Highlights
- PHT: Kreider keeps Rangers alive | Highlights