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It’s Official- Lidstrom Returning

from Bill Roose of DetroitRedWings.com,

The giant breeze that rolled up the freeway arteries leading out of downtown was the collective exhalation of a Red Wings’ organization relieved to know that one of the best players of this generation will be back.

Nicklas Lidstrom, who is widely considered the world’s best defenseman in hockey, will return for a 19th season, signing a one-year contract, the Red Wings announced Tuesday.

“I get to watch him every day,” Red Wings general manager Ken Holland said. “I still think that Nick is the premier two-way defenseman in the world. There might be some player that maybe a little bit more productive, offensively, but I think when you factor in who good Nick is defensively, how he played the last half of the year, certainly the last 30 games … I still think we have one – if not the – best defensemen in the world. It’s a great day for Red Wings’ fans.”

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, Detroit Red Wings, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: nick+lidstrom

Comments

Red Winger's avatar

he he he

Posted by Red Winger from Sault Ste Marie on 06/01/10 at 01:12 PM ET

scotts0's avatar

In my opinion, Yzerman’s departure solidified Lidstrom’s return.  There was no way a stand up person and player like Lidstrom could hit the fans while they’re down like that.

Posted by scotts0 from New York on 06/01/10 at 01:21 PM ET

Nathan's avatar

Thank god.

Posted by Nathan from the scoresheet! on 06/01/10 at 01:32 PM ET

Greg's avatar

I thought he’d return, but expected maybe for $5mill, not that he’s not worth the $6, but figured he’d want to give the Wings a bit more $$$ to play with.  I wonder if the announcement of the cap going up $2mil changed what they offered/accepted.

Posted by Greg on 06/01/10 at 01:34 PM ET

Tony's avatar

It’s good for the league that he’s sticking around for at least one more year….

Posted by Tony from Virginia Beach, VA on 06/01/10 at 01:46 PM ET

Paul's avatar

TSN reporting just over $6M, Helene St. James says about $7M.

Posted by Paul from Motown Area on 06/01/10 at 01:47 PM ET

Paul's avatar

Khan at Mlive,

Holland declined to reveal the value of the deal, expect to say that Lidstrom has taken a pay decrease from his $7.45 million salary. A source said Lidstrom will earn slightly more than the $6 million his defense partner, Brian Rafalski, earns.

“He’s helped give us some extra (salary) cap space,’’ Holland said. “Hopefully the cap goes up a little and it gives us a little wiggle room to improve the depth of our team.’‘

Posted by Paul from Motown Area on 06/01/10 at 01:58 PM ET

Avatar

I just hope he stays for number 20.

Posted by bobbo on 06/01/10 at 02:55 PM ET

Lindas1st's avatar

haaaaaallelujah hallelujah halleeeeeluujah!

Posted by Lindas1st from New England on 06/01/10 at 02:58 PM ET

J.J. from Kansas's avatar

I thought he’d return, but expected maybe for $5mill, not that he’s not worth the $6, but figured he’d want to give the Wings a bit more $$$ to play with.  I wonder if the announcement of the cap going up $2mil changed what they offered/accepted.

Posted by Greg on 06/01/10 at 12:34 PM ET

If the Wings making the playoffs after what happened this last season and Lidstrom’s 2nd half proved anything, it’s that he’s worth whatever he asked for, even if he wanted another 7.5.  Yeah, it would have been nice to have an extra $1M of cap space out of this, but it would also be nice if Rafalski were to consistently play UP to his $6M salary, and Raffi’s not the captain of the team.

I think the cap going up probably had an effect on it, but I also think that a lot of the lowball thoughts of what he’d go for were solidified earlier in the season when, on paper, it looked like Lidstrom had lost significant talent from only a couple years ago.  I was also thinking he’d go somewhere in the $5M range, but, as the four decades between when the conference finals ended and the cup finals began gave me time to really think on it, that number was probably never realistic after March. 

The truth is that Lidstrom has lost a half-step from being the amazing player he has been, but he’s still at least a half-step ahead of even the league’s best.  When you start talking about other players’ values as they compare to Lidstrom, the only way you can make a favorable comparison is when you start talking about their potential or how much longer you expect that guy to play for you.  If you knew that there would be no hockey ever again after next season, there is a very short list of guys you might take before him and I’d be happy to argue until we’re both blue in the face that, for one year, Lidstrom would be the better choice.

Posted by J.J. from Kansas on 06/01/10 at 03:08 PM ET

perfection's avatar

seriously…

i was confident in his return only because everyone within the organization seemed confident in his return.

but, man is that relieving. i only wish it were a 2 year contract and he announced it was his last. we are going to go through this all over again next year when he “decides” after the season. I wish he could just announce it’s his last contract and let us all send him out in style rather than hopeful questioning followed by a broken heart when he finally hangs them up.

of course, that’s easy for me to say. he’s the one who has to turn his back on the team he’s been a part of for 20 years. not easy, no matter how “ready” he is to return to Sweden. whatever. focus on next season. the captain’s back. that’s all that matters.

Posted by perfection from LaLaLand on 06/01/10 at 03:09 PM ET

Lindas1st's avatar

BTW, he scored his 50th career playoff goal this year. Which is a huge milestone for a defenseman. Only Coffey (59) and Potvin (56) have scored more goals in the SCP. I didn’t see any articles or anything written about it which I thought was a little disrespectful to him, but he’s probably dosen’t care anyway. Obviously he won’t say anything about it because he’s not that type of player - he’s all about the team. But I think it’s a great accomplishment and deserves to be noted.

Posted by Lindas1st from New England on 06/01/10 at 03:09 PM ET

Primis's avatar

I won’t lie, I was hoping for around $5m/yr m yself.

Won’t argue with $6m/yr though.

I guess we’ll see in the fall.  If he has the subpar-even-for-players-not-named-Lidstrom start he had to this year again, we might be questioning $6m then.

Posted by Primis on 06/01/10 at 03:10 PM ET

Primis's avatar

we are going to go through this all over again next year when he “decides” after the season. I wish he could just announce it’s his last contract and let us all send him out in style rather than hopeful questioning followed by a broken heart when he finally hangs them up.

Posted by perfection on 06/01/10 at 02:09 PM ET

I think he’s leaving the door open, but doesn’t want to force it with a 2-year contract.  Say Kindl comes up and makes huge strides, Nick would hate to still be on tap for one more year (remember—if Nick retires mid-contract, it still takes a hit against the cap for the duration).  I doubt he wants to put the org in a situation like that, even for one year, because it looks like the cap is going to remain tricky to manage for the coming seasons.

So I’d read it that there’s still a chance of a 2011-12 campaign, but that’s to worry about after this next season, when we see what some of the youngsters can really do.

Posted by Primis on 06/01/10 at 03:18 PM ET

shanetx's avatar

but, man is that relieving. i only wish it were a 2 year contract and he announced it was his last. we are going to go through this all over again next year when he “decides” after the season. I wish he could just announce it’s his last contract and let us all send him out in style rather than hopeful questioning followed by a broken heart when he finally hangs them up.

Yzerman went year to year, too, didn’t he?

I don’t care if Nick does this again, as long as he lets the team know by June 1st every year.  It’s not like he pulled a Niedermayer for crying out loud.

Posted by shanetx from Floydada, Texas on 06/01/10 at 03:40 PM ET

SYF's avatar

So glad he’s back and now we can see Tick Tock go to work on getting a roster in place by the start of the ‘10-‘11 regular season.

Posted by SYF from Alana Blanchard's Bikinis and Surfboards on 06/01/10 at 03:58 PM ET

Hippy Dave's avatar

Excellent, great news.

Posted by Hippy Dave from Portland by way of Detroit on 06/01/10 at 03:59 PM ET

MoreShoot's avatar

I won’t lie, I was hoping for around $5m/yr m yself.

You weren’t going to ask him to take less than Rafalski, were you?  Why should he take less to help beef up R’s stats?

Posted by MoreShoot on 06/01/10 at 04:44 PM ET

Avatar

Why should he take less to help beef up R’s stats?

I’m not complaining about his salary, but youre question is ridiculous.

It wouldn’t be to “beef up” anyone’s stats, it would be to give the brass more money to play with, giving the team the best chance to win Cup #5 in what might be #5’s final year.

For what it’s worth, I’m glad he’s back, and ecstatic that he took even a small discount (if it’s $6M then that’s a 20% discount on his already massively discounted salary, and that is NOTHING to sneeze at) and I’m happy he signed a one-year deal. 

He should play till he’s ready to stop, and I would hate for him to sign a two-year deal, then decide that he’s not fit to play to his standards next year and either leave the brass in the lurch with a huge cap hit going to nothing OR to play the year and perform below his standards rather than leaving when he felt he should.

Posted by Garth on 06/01/10 at 05:33 PM ET

MoreShoot's avatar

I’m not complaining about his salary, but youre question is ridiculous.

I was being sarcastic about how much better R’s game is with Lidstrom.

Posted by MoreShoot on 06/01/10 at 06:01 PM ET

Jeff  OKWingnut's avatar

Thank god.

Posted by Nathan from Jonny Ericsson’s ice cream truck on 06/01/10 at 12:32 PM ET

Funny - - first thing I thought was “praise jesus”

Posted by Jeff OKWingnut from Quest for 12 on 06/01/10 at 08:17 PM ET

Jeff  OKWingnut's avatar

Via Khan(!)

6.2 million

“There was some negotiations, but not a lot,’’ Lidstrom said. “I wanted to give the Wings some flexibility to sign some players.’’

The strength of the team was a major factor in his decision.

“If the team was looking to rebuild and get rid of older players it might have been a different situation,’’ Lidstrom said. “But they’re in it to win it. Kenny kept telling me that, too. He said, ‘We want to have a shot at winning the Stanley Cup.’

“I believe in the team, its foundation. We have a good core. I believe in the players.’’

World class - - just like his game.

Posted by Jeff OKWingnut from Quest for 12 on 06/01/10 at 08:19 PM ET

Sullyosis's avatar

Via Khan(!)

6.2 million

Thanks gang!  This is Great News.  I’m gonna go perfect something just to honour The Perfect Human.  Like….clubbing my dog.  I think I can handle a task like that in the beginning.  I beat him everyday the Red Wings aren’t winning anyway, so it’ll work out alright no matter what!

Posted by Sullyosis from A hateful lair in Post Apocalyptic US (or Arizona) on 06/01/10 at 09:22 PM ET

redxblack's avatar

So I guess this means at least one more year until Zetterman trades in the A for a C?

Posted by redxblack from Akron Ohio on 06/01/10 at 09:27 PM ET

Rdwings28's avatar

Just watch, he will have a career year, and Norris 7

Posted by Rdwings28 on 06/01/10 at 09:46 PM ET

MOWingsfan19's avatar

Not that I was really “that” worried aboot it, but it’s very comforting to know it’s done.

Posted by MOWingsfan19 from I really like our team on 06/01/10 at 10:34 PM ET

SYF's avatar

Just watch, he will have a career year, and Norris 7

Posted by Rdwings28 on 06/01/10 at 08:46 PM ET

And a Cup.

Posted by SYF from Alana Blanchard's Bikinis and Surfboards on 06/02/10 at 12:17 AM ET

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Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.

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