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The Malik Report

Ten minutes with former Red Wings captain Nicklas Lidstrom

Updated w/ text at 4:13 PM: The Detroit Red Wings' morning skate ahead of tonight's game against the Anaheim Ducks (7:30 PM, FSD/Prime Ticket/97.1 FM) was somewhat quiet...Until we learned that the Wings have recalled Gustav Nyquist as someone Ken Holland won't name is injured up front, we found out that today's game marks Jordin Tootoo's 500th NHL appearance, that this weekend will be the "Fathers' Trip," and we found out that Nicklas Lidstrom spoke to the Red Wings' media corps.

Thankfully, the Windsor Star's Bob Duff posted a video of the entirety of the time that Lidstrom took out of his day to speak with the media.  Lidstrom's very happily retired  for good, and he sounds incredibly content with his post-hockey-playing life:

Duff posted Wings coach Mike Babcock's game-day presser, too:

 

Update: The Detroit News's Ted Kulfan spoke to Lidstrom about returning to the Joe...

"It feels good to be back," said Lidstrom, the former Red Wings Hall of Fame-bound defenseman, who attended the morning skate with fellow retired teammate Holmstrom. "It's just a different feeling when you're walking in here and you're not a player anymore But it feels good seeing the guys and seeing all the people around the team, and watching the team, too."

Lidstrom, 42, retired after last season. Although he misses some aspects of the game, the competition, Lidstrom isn't tempted on planning a comeback.

"I miss being in the locker room and being with the guys, and I miss the game situations, too," Lidstrom said. "When you're watching the games and the heat of the moment, and the playing, that's what I miss. The day in and day out grind of practicing, and all that, I don't miss a whole lot. Being out there and playing in front of 20,000 people, and the intensity of the game and the crowd, I miss that."

Lidstrom hasn't been tempted to make a return.

"Not to the point where I do this, come back," Lidstrom said. "I know how much fun playing is, but I also know what it takes to be there (on the ice) and that's something I can't do, be up to that level of play where I want to be and that's the reason I retired and I'm still retired."

Even in hindsight, had Lidstrom known the four-month lockout and the resulting shortened season would have taken place, he would not have played one more season.

"I still had my mind made up," Lidstrom said. "If you come back and play in a shortened season, it's easier even though it's a lot more intense, but it's easier when it's a shortened season. But you have to stay in shape to play at this level, too.

As did MLive's Ansar Khan (you'll have to read his story to find out what Teemu Selanne has to say about Lidstrom)...

He is enjoying retirement in Sweden, helping coach his 12-year-old son's team, dropping off and picking up kids at school and spending time with family. He occasionally scouts a Swedish junior game for the Red Wings and watches some NHL games on TV.

“It's a slower pace, but I enjoy it,'' Lidstrom said.

He ruled out returning for the 2014 Olympics. He will serve as an ambassador for the Sweden national team at the 2013 World Championships but said he hasn't considered a future executive role on the team. He said the Red Wings are playing well, especially considering their plethora of injuries.

“It's a learning experience for the kids and it's a great way to get a chance to play, with so many guys out,'' Lidstrom said.

He and his wife are staying at Holmstrom's house, and he enjoyed riding down to the rink Friday with his long-time teammate and buddy.

“A lot of memories, it was a fun ride down,'' Lidstrom said. “It's different walking in here and coming into this locker room when you're not a player anymore. You're used to sitting in your stall, used to putting gear on. It's a different feeling, but it's good to be back in here again.''

Coach Mike Babcock was happy to see Lidstrom and Holmstrom.

“I just saw Homer and Nick in the hallway and told them, ‘I should have loved you more when you were here,' '' Babcock said. “I miss them so much. The puck got through the point all the time and Homer got the puck back. I told (Holmstrom), 'When you were yelling at me and I was yelling back, it was just me sharing the love.' But he said the old lady won’t let him come back.''

The AP's Larry Lage has filed a quote-less form of an article that will be fleshed out soon, too:

Nicklas Lidstrom says it feels different walking into the Detroit Red Wings’ dressing room as a retired defenseman.

The seven-time Norris Trophy winner, though, insists he has no regrets about choosing to end his NHL career.

Lidstrom spoke to reporters at Joe Louis Arena on Friday after the Red Wings skated to prepare for a game against the Anaheim Ducks. The 42-year-old Lidstrom could still be playing. He turned down a chance to resume his career this year during lockout-shortened season.

Lidstrom says he’s enjoying being with his wife and children back home in Sweden. He is an assistant coach for his 12-year-old son’s hockey team and occasionally scouts prospects for the Red Wings.

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Comments

Slumpy's avatar

Losing Lids, Rafalski and Stuart has been devastating.
Wings will never find another defenseman as good as Lids so they should trade for and start drafting a lot more Vlady and Cheli type elbows high hitters.

Our D can’t handle any team that is bigger than ours (Blues, Kings…....) right now.

Lids has to be shaking his head watching this years Wings thinking have these boys learned nothing from me about positioning.

Posted by Slumpy from Detroit on 02/15/13 at 05:55 PM ET

Avatar

“I still had my mind made up,” Lidstrom said. “If you come back and play in a shortened season, it’s easier even though it’s a lot more intense, but it’s easier when it’s a shortened season. But you have to stay in shape to play at this level, too.

Easier to play 48: So much for your lockout theory George.  If they would have been legitimate contenders, Nick would still be in the lineup—as I’ve said all along.  He had to be frustrated by so many of Holland’s unfulfilled promises in his last two seasons (“We’ll spend to the cap,” etc.  He was smart to hang ‘em up.  Let them rebuild.

Posted by jkm2011 on 02/15/13 at 06:34 PM ET

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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.