DETROIT -- They rolled out the red carpet Thursday night at Joe Louis Arena, and there was no question as to whom it was meant to welcome.
Looking down at center ice prior to the Detroit Red Wings' game against the Colorado Avalanche, the red carpet was in the shape of the No. 5. If you looked behind each net, "5" was painted into the ice; in the corners of the rink, there were 5s; and attached to the lapels of Red Wings employees: 5.
That, of course, was the number Nicklas Lidstrom wore during his legendary 20-year NHL career, all with the Red Wings.
It clearly was the seven-time Norris Trophy-winning defenseman’s night, and the Red Wings made sure everybody knew it.