The Malik Report
by George Malik on 06/20/11 at 05:19 AM ET
Red Wings captain Nicklas Lidstrom will inform GM Ken Holland as to whether he wishes to continue playing either today or tomorrow in Las Vegas, and Lidstrom doesn’t top his hand—ever—but if there’s anyone who knows the Wings’ Swedes best, it’s Expressen’s Gunnar Nordstrom, a.k.a. ‘Der Alte” (the old man). Via Chris from Too Many mean on the Site, I headed over to Expressen and then Nordstrom’s blog, where Nordstrom’s taking a big leap of faith (and this is roughly translated), albiet an informed one:
After meeting with Lidstrom here in Los Angeles on Sunday morning, I’m so confident that he’s going to continue that I will dare write it on SPORT-Expressen even if Lidas won’t dare say it himself.
He will have a first meeting with his team’s GM, Ken Holland, today in Las Vegas. But I don’t see hindrances occurring which would prevent Lidstrom from continuing to play in the NHL.
He’s loved by his owners, the Ilitch family, and is tremendously respected by the team, starting with Ken Holland at the top, and is popular and respected by his teammates, as well as his fans.
Money is obviously not an easy issue to determine. Perhaps not this time—Lidstrom is, as I’ve said, nominated for the Norris Trophy, alongside Zdeno Chara of Boston and Shea Weber from Nashville. There’s no good argument for a pay cut when he sits down at the negotiating table. He has a better season last year than the one previously, he’s considered to be one of the three best defensemen in the NHL by the media, and Detroit’s already lost veteran Brian Rafalski, who retired.
Therefore the Wings have several million dollars to replace Rafalski, and can be used to keep Lidstrom.
With Jonathan Ericsson possibly leaving, one also understands how important it is to keep Lidstrom for another season.
Nicklas also saw looked trim and toned when we met in the lobby of the Loews Hotel in Santa Monica, which makes me even more convinced that he’s going to return.
In my eyes, there’s no doubt. Therefore, we’re daring to state on SPORT-Expressen that hockey fans can rejoice and expect to see Lidstrom wearing the #5 jersey with the Detroit Red Wings for another season.
Here’s Nordstrom’s main article, which is posted on Expressen’s Sports and front pages….
Nicklas Lidstrom will continue to play in the NHL
Los Angeles. Much has been speculated about Nicklas Lidstrom, 41, and whether he’ll continue his NHL career.
Today, he will meet with the team’s general manager, Ken Holland, to discuss his future.
According to information provided to SPORT-Expressen, the Swedish superstar will play for another season
Nicklas Lidstrom has spet the past few days in Los Angeles, where he was in vacation with his wife Annika and his sons Kevin, Adam, Samuel and Lucas.
Between trips to Universal Studios, Rodeo Drive, the Hollywood Walk of Fame and Laguna Beach, “Lidas” has considered his future.
Meeting in Las Vegas
A statement is expected today, Monday, when he meets Red Wings GM Ken Holland in Las Vegas, where the Swedish star is going to get ready for the NHL Awards Show, which will be televised on Wednesday.
“Lidas” himself wouldn’t reveal his decision, but says to SPORT-Expressen:
“The fact that I was nominated for the Norris Trophy this year has no effect on my decision, it’s simply a nice reminder that I had a good season last winter.”
“My decision will be based upon two things: motivation and what my family thinks. Yes, we’ve talked about it during our vacation here in California,” he says.
Lidstrom looks very fit when he met SPORT-Expressen in the lobby of the Loews Hotel in Santa Monica, and confirms that he’s been working out for three weeks.
“The hardest thing when you reach my age is pre-season training. You have to be properly motivated to be able to cope with and get through it. And you have to be prepared to cope mentally as well.”
Given that he looks so tremendously well-trained [i.e.fit], it’s difficult to not conclude that he’ll play in the 2011-2012 season.
Earned 40 million Swedish Kronor last year
But first he must discuss the matter with Holland and negotiate a contract.
Lidstrom earned 40 million Swedish Kronor last season, and while his market value remains fixed [at $6 million], especially after he was nominated for his seventh Norris Trophy.
He’s played for 19 years in the NHL, has played in 1,194 regular-season games in Detroit and registered 1,108 points, consisting of 253 goals and 855 assists.
“Lidas” has won the Stanley Cup four times and won the Norris Trophy six times. He also won the Conn Smythe Trophy as the playoffs’ best player in 2002.
I won’t believe it until I hear it from Lidstrom or Holland, but Nordstrom takes leaps of faith that reach the front page so incredibly rarely that you can at least add me to the bandwagon.
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The Malik Report is a destination for all things Red Wings-related. I offer biased, perhaps unprofessional-at-times and verbose coverage of my favorite team, their prospects and developmental affiliates. I've joined the Kukla's Korner family with five years of blogging under my belt, and I hope you'll find almost everything you need to follow your Red Wings at a place where all opinions are created equal and we're all friends, talking about hockey and the team we love to follow.