Swedish defenseman Niklas Kronwall was working out with the Motor City Mechanics of the United Hockey League during the early part of the NHL's Olympic break eight years ago.
Lavish it wasn't, but Kronwall, then 25, only recently had returned from knee surgery and didn't think taking a vacation while more than 100 players went to play in the 2006 Turin Olympics.
He was right.
"I kept skating with them and out of the blue I get a phone call that says, 'Hey, they might need a body out there,'" Kronwall, now 33 and an alternate captain with the Detroit Red Wings, told NHL.com. "The next day I was on a flight [to Turin]. One day I was watching it on TV and the next day I was right in there. Everything just happened so quickly. [Mattias] Ohlund went down and all of a sudden I was playing in the gold-medal game."